Very worried about the recent direction of Apple

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    Posted: 29 June 2011 11:40 AM

    I’ll preface my statement that I’m a LONG-time aapl investor and have never had a problem with how Apple manages their product releases. I have purchased ~$10K in Apple products over the last 4 years and have over ‘7 figures xN’ invested in aapl.

    All that said, the recent “release” of FCPX and MORE importantly the scraping of FCS 3 has caused me to re-evaluate my long term outlook for Apple. IMO, Apple has made a HUGE mistake in terminating support for FCS 3 and is sending an incredibly obscene/rude message to anyone who invests in Apple SW/products. The credibility damage is off the charts when it comes to what Apple has done to these users. The implications for the bigger picture can’t be understated here. i.e. Apple is throwing 10’s of thousands of professionals (FCS users) ‘under the bus’ and my interpretation of this situation is that Apple will/may do the same to any other set of Apple users/investors.

    Also, in the short term I’m very nervous about the impending release of Lion. If Apple blows this release (like they did FCX) then the short term impact will be huge. I also think it’s CRAZY to hold up the release of the AIR for what will be a 1.0 OS release. Doesn’t get any nuttier than that! 

    Anyway, I am still nearly 100% long aapl but am struggling/re-evaluating my long term investing plan.

      cheers and let me know if you think my fears (about Apple/aapl) are justified or NOT.
        JohnG

    [ Edited: 29 June 2011 11:43 AM by johnG ]      
  • Posted: 29 June 2011 11:50 AM #1

    See what Apple is saying about this.

         
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    Posted: 29 June 2011 11:55 AM #2

    The success of Leopard and Snow Leopard was partially based on Rosetta.  Rosetta supported PPC (PowerPC) software.

    For early OS X, we had Classic, Carbon and Cocoa.    It made my transition much less worrisome.  Without Classic mode, I would have had far less incentive to upgrade to OS X.

    EDITED: A portion of either backwards compatibility or at the least , an upgrade procedure, is always welcome for a transitional period.  —- if there is one

    If the issue is strong enough, Apple has been known to relent.

    I know nothing hands-on about FCS.  That said, the reviews by actual users are still coming in.  In terms of media software, I’m an outside observer.  As an aficionado (understatement) of good user interface and as an investor in Apple, I’m definitely watching the issue. 

    At this point, to answer your question, I would not use “fear” at this point.  An email to Steve Jobs expressing your concerns about alienating the multimedia producers would be a reasonable tactic.

    [ Edited: 29 June 2011 02:07 PM by Tetrachloride ]      
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    Posted: 29 June 2011 11:56 AM #3

    John, yours fears are valid. This goes back to the separation of Apple from AAPL. I have voiced my displeasure of Apple for many years. This truly is the most arrogant company in the world. With that being said, AAPL has grown because of the expanding consumer base. This FCX debacle is not going to change that momentum, it will just anger/alienate some customers. Apple has taken steps to soften the end users angst (money back). There will be more to come I am sure. I am not a Final Cut user so I really can’t participate in that directly, but Apple has a plan, might not be a good one at the moment, but they are working to fix I am sure.  :innocent:  BTW, yes Apple still disgust me, but AAPL has made me some good returns. Its a love/hate relationship.  Let AAPL drop below $300 and it will be a hate/hate relationship. tongue laugh

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    Posted: 29 June 2011 12:12 PM #4

    lulli - 29 June 2011 02:50 PM

    See what Apple is saying about this.

    The faq says that backwards compatibility is not a possibility due to the nature of the file structures.

    My total noob glance leaves me wondering if anything is a step backwards in FCP X.

    Apple should have had this Faq published on the same day.  It sounds like someone had to write it up after the controversy arose.  PR and Marketing departments seem to have underestimated users’ concerns.

         
  • Posted: 29 June 2011 12:15 PM #5

    adamthompson3232 - 29 June 2011 02:54 PM

    I think possibly basing one’s investment strategy on the FCX release is very, very unwise.

    +1

         
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    Posted: 29 June 2011 12:20 PM #6

    The throwing professional users ‘under the bus’ is precisely the signal I look for continuing growth in the company. The frequent and routine sacrifice of one’s most demanding customers is the key to overcoming the innovator’s dilemma. Apple is one of the few companies willing to do this.

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  • Posted: 29 June 2011 12:20 PM #7

    I am not worried.

    But, I did spend time with a cousin who is a film producer.  He will not go to the new FCP saying it is totally unsuitable for professional use.

         
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    Posted: 29 June 2011 12:32 PM #8

    asymco - 29 June 2011 03:20 PM

    The throwing professional users ‘under the bus’ is precisely the signal I look for continuing growth in the company. The frequent and routine sacrifice of one’s most demanding customers is the key to overcoming the innovator’s dilemma. Apple is one of the few companies willing to do this.

    hah…..........  that’s an interesting and perceptive viewpoint and one I hadn’t considered.

    Do you think Apple could/would do the same thing (throw them under the bus) to their owners, AKA appl holders? 

      cheers
        JohnG

         
  • Posted: 29 June 2011 01:30 PM #9

    asymco - 29 June 2011 03:20 PM

    The throwing professional users ‘under the bus’ is precisely the signal I look for continuing growth in the company. The frequent and routine sacrifice of one’s most demanding customers is the key to overcoming the innovator’s dilemma. Apple is one of the few companies willing to do this.

    Going to jump in here and back up - 100% - Horace’s killer perception on this one.

    Horace has been drilling into our heads that the first foot into the disruption grave is to embrace every Song of the Siren of your best customers.  This FCP dust up is like the missing floppy drive on the first iMac dust up, like the no-show keyboard on the iPhone dust up, like the banishment of boxed software from Apple retail stores dust up, like the (ad infinitum) dust up.

    If history has taught us anything it’s that Apple mercilessly and violently shunts aside the old for the new, and piss on the cost from disgruntled hanger-ons.  By definition, there will be missteps and lots and lots of crestfallen customers comfortable in their everyday routines and resistant to Class One change.

    Maybe they went a bridge too far on this one, I am not in a position to say.  But I tell you this ... if there is not some element of angry, pitchfork-armed, jilted customers raising Cain about some fundamentally new direction Apple takes in its software, hardware and services, then its demise is on the horizon.

    They will sort out the FCP problem.  But get your MIND RIGHT about being blindsided again in the near future from Apple’s next Big Idea.

    And in your spare time, pick up the Innovator’s Dilemma and read what Clay Christensen has to say about all those companies that are no longer with us and about which we wax nostalgia because they, faithfully, did everything their best customers told them to do.

    Jobs obviously read that book, and Homer’s Odyssey, too.

         
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    Posted: 29 June 2011 02:12 PM #10

    First the xserve

    The mac pro being the forgotten child of the mac family

    This fcpx issue

    Seems like apple have something in its sleeve for the pro or as it was said they have decided to get out of the pro business.


    history tell me that apple management see so far ahead that sometimes we can’t understand a move until it’ s become clear, and then looking backyoua say “how come i didn’t see that coming,all the clue were there”

         
  • Posted: 29 June 2011 02:21 PM #11

    In my spare time I edit programs for a community TV station.  I uses FCP.  It is a powerful tool but is not very intuitive.  It took me a year to become really comfortable with it.  It is almost as good as Avid, a program for Windows computers, which BTW is much more expensive than FCP.

    iMovie is intuitive, easy to learn and use, but is not really suitable for ‘real’ editing.

    I was looking forward to the new Final Cut, but I am disappointed in what was delivered.  People who use iMovie will be delighted with the change.  I believe it raises the level of movie editing by ‘the rest of us’ above what is possible with iMovie, and this is very important to Apple.

    I agree that the change was needed, but it was very poorly handled for professional users.  We are caught in transition.  It will probably be a year before it will be useful for me.  In the meantime I will continue with the old FCP.

    More importantly, Apple appears to be surprised at the reaction of professional editors to this change.  This worries me a lot more than the disruption because it indicates that Apple may not be as much in touch with its customers as it used to be.

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    Posted: 29 June 2011 03:05 PM #12

    As a professional photographer, I decided to go with Adobe’s Lightroom rather than Apple Aperture, because I do not trust Apple to support professionals over the long term. I could see them dumping Aperture and not supporting it with future operating systems, so I decided that I couldn’t put thousands of hours of archived work into a program with an uncertain future. My wife does amateur video, and was REALLY upset when Apple changed iMovie so abruptly after iMovie 6.  She gave up video as a result, rather than buying a more expensive program. If I wasn’t such an Apple fan, she probably would make her next computer a netbook. That is one result of throwing loyal users under the bus.

    I think it might have been better for Apple to look to an example such as Nikon, which completely supports its professional users?upon which its reputation is based?and which also has an enormous volume of casual buyers and users BECAUSE they’ve established such a great relationship with professionals.

    michelc - 29 June 2011 05:12 PM

    First the xserve

    The mac pro being the forgotten child of the mac family

    This fcpx issue

    Seems like apple have something in its sleeve for the pro or as it was said they have decided to get out of the pro business.


    history tell me that apple management see so far ahead that sometimes we can’t understand a move until it’ s become clear, and then looking backyoua say “how come i didn’t see that coming,all the clue were there”

         
  • Posted: 29 June 2011 04:19 PM #13

    asymco - 29 June 2011 03:20 PM

    The throwing professional users ‘under the bus’ is precisely the signal I look for continuing growth in the company. The frequent and routine sacrifice of one’s most demanding customers is the key to overcoming the innovator’s dilemma. Apple is one of the few companies willing to do this.

    Its this willingness to abandon the old (no matter how profitable) in favor of something better is exactly what separates Apple from MSFT (and many others).

    Ron Brinkman was on the initial development team for Shake.  He KNOWS how large this market segment is, and its financial import.

    http://tinyurl.com/FCPX-Rebuttal

    The tail (10,000 hi end editors) is no longer wagging the dog.  This tells me that Apple is no longer controlled by a very small (VERY SMALL) market segment, and that they are gearing to address the other 99.99% of the computing market.  THIS makes me more comfortable with AAPL as an investment.

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  • Posted: 29 June 2011 04:29 PM #14

    Mike in Helsinki - 29 June 2011 04:30 PM

    Going to jump in here and back up - 100% - Horace’s killer perception on this one.

    Horace has been drilling into our heads that the first foot into the disruption grave is to embrace every Song of the Siren of your best customers.  This FCP dust up is like the missing floppy drive on the first iMac dust up, like the no-show keyboard on the iPhone dust up, like the banishment of boxed software from Apple retail stores dust up, like the (ad infinitum) dust up.

    The thing Gates feared most was changing DOS to the point that users looked for alternatives.  That’s why so much DOS code remains, to this day, in Windows.  Its why WinXX is so buggy and prone to attacks.

    Fearing the loss of customers not willing to upgrade their proprietary applications, MSFT spelled its doom.  We see it happening now.

    I applaud Apple’s approach to change (without it we wouldn’t have Intel processors, MacOSX, iPod, iTunes, iPhone, iOS, App Store, iPad, iCloud, etc.), and advise those resistant to it to get another life.

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    Posted: 29 June 2011 04:39 PM #15

    Of similar views to Asymco, Mike in Helsinki and Gregg Thurman.  Apple is doing something many businesses unwilling to do.  Most of these businesses have disappeared.

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