(Homeland) – Current users buy Apple products for durability, luxury or other reasons that have nothing to do with the excitement of a nascent technology.
In 1995, founder Steve Jobs interviewed admitting that he had visited and obtained many ideas from the research center of the printer company Xerox. In this interview, billionaire Jobs said that Xerox made a mistake in the management strategy, thereby bringing a printer corporation with the fundamental technologies that created success for Microsoft as well as Apple, to the abyss of bankruptcy. .
As we all know, both Apple founder Steve Jobs and Microsoft Bill Gates have admitted to taking the idea from the PARC research center of the printer company Xerox. In fact, PARC researchers have successfully created the technology prerequisite for personal computers and many of today’s modern technologies, but Xerox only cares about the printer and does not understand the results above. what.
Consequently, when both Steve Jobs and Bill Gates got access to these technologies, they quickly realized that they had grabbed the gold mine, thereby developing the giants like Microsoft or Apple in the 1990s.
Steve Jobs interviewed in 1995 about the failure of Xerox
According to Jobs, large corporations that dominate the market and become almost monopolistic will easily fall into the management trap. For beverage manufacturers like Pepsi, their products don’t have much to improve in technology and usually need a major change in packaging every 10 years. The people who make Pepsi’s main success are not research centers, but salesmen, marketing strategists …
But for firms that used to become almost monopolistic like IBM or Xerox, the sharp rise in stock prices made companies forget what was the core of their success. When it was too successful with a product, the company began to hesitate to change because just one failure can lower the price of shares and upset shareholders.
Therefore, the people who make the success and win the hearts of managers in these monopoly companies are now retailers, marketing strategists … not research experts.
From here on, product connoisseurs and product innovators were phased out of important meetings and lost voting power for major corporate events. Businesses gradually forget what makes their products so interesting and this is a deadly point for tech firms.
When retailers, marketing experts, financial directors … are gradually favored by shareholders and holding decision-making power of the company instead of research staff, the business leaders also gradually lose the ability to divide. the difference between a good product and a bad product.
Even Jobs said that businesses will gradually lose their orientation to really help customers, to want the best product for buyers. All that the leadership is aiming for will be only profit and shareholders.
The story of Xerox is similar, the managers of this printer brand are only interested in the main product but miss the golden technology created by the PARC research center. When they see new products, they don’t even understand anything and throw away the technologies.
“After just an hour of looking at the numbers, the Apple technician understood the technology and its meaning better than any Xerox director, even though we had tried to explain to them for many years.“PARC expert Larry Tesler said.
According to Jobs, Xerox could have grown tenfold or even become a Microsoft in the 1990s if it weren’t for the management trap. Ironically, Apple now seems to be slowly following this trail.
Apple is only a shadow of itself?
In mid-August 2020, Apple’s total market cap exceeded $ 2,000 billion for the first time, but they are increasingly unsatisfying consumers. In fact, Apple has tried to keep innovation for its products, but apple loyalists are increasingly losing interest.
Now, Apple sales are standing mainly because of the quality as well as the luxurious image when consumers hold a defective apple in their hand rather than because of the interesting experience before.
In the past few years, the Macs of Apple have barely changed to bring real excitement to customers. Of course they also have new improvements like the overflow screen, wireless headphones or Apple Watch. But these changes are too small compared to the past, not to mention many mobile companies like Samsung, Xiaomi, Huawei … also have similar improvements if not ahead of Apple.
The iPhone is still great, but it is no longer outstanding at number 1 in the world. Sales peaked from 2015 and Apple is still unable to surpass it. Ipad or Mac is still the same, despite having many tweaks, but hardly much different from when it was first released.
Even, many experts believe that Apple was forced to increase product prices because its unit sales went down, thereby keeping revenue and pleasing shareholders. This is the reason why the future iPhones are increasingly more expensive than previous generations.
Currently, Apple mainly focuses on services with annual subscription fee packages. An iPhone user may need to add Apple TV, Apple Music, buy more iCloud storage … It sounds boring, but it is stable and quite okay for shareholders when the stock price still increases.
This is almost true of what Steve Jobs feared when talking about tech firms too big to fail. A monopoly puts companies on the brink of victory, makes them afraid to change, forgets the difference between good and bad products, eliminates people who make products interesting, ignores customers to do satisfied shareholders.
The investors who entered Apple in 1998 did not know what the company would be like 10 years later, but current shareholders expect their share prices to stay in price and grow for the next 10 years. So Apple management needs stability, not the excitement from loyal people.
Obviously, this stability helps Apple have a better financial position than ever, but the crazy years of Apple’s excitement are probably over. Current users buy Apple products for durability, for luxury or for other reasons that have nothing to do with the excitement of a new technology.