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In case it wasn't abundantly clear, Apple's focus is on the consumer not on the pro / enthusiast / d

Discussion in 'Apple' started by Sam Posten, Apr 28, 2010.

  1. Sam Posten

    Sam Posten Moderator
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    A line in the sand is drawn.
    http://gizmodo.com/5526330/the-center-of-apples-universe

    Just like the pro users who have been used to being a 'hobby' for apple for a while the desktop user and desktop developer are now an afterthought.

    As Daniel Jaikut put it:


     
  2. Sam Posten

    Sam Posten Moderator
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    You can now get 16 developer licenses for the price of one WWDC entry. That's a big shift.
    Via Daring Fireball

    Quote:
    And Steve might not have been lying, there might not really be a Mac App Store. It's just that full blown OSX is ceasing to be as relevant to Apple and as such they have no need to lock it down the way they might once have.
     
  3. Sam Posten

    Sam Posten Moderator
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    re: You can't create an iPhone app without a Mac.

    Yet.
     
  4. Astrakan

    Astrakan Auditioning

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  5. mattCR

    mattCR Executive Producer
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    I get asked this often. I've had people complain to me about Bluray supports and why FCS keeps getting farther and farther behind, even in new versions.

    Apple is basically saying: our support base amongst those users is relatively small here, our support base for others is big,

    I think even Mac fans will admit, Windows7 is really Microsoft's first really big, flat out "hit" since probably XP first came out. (and no "laugh laugh XP", because when it came out, that was before Apple had their own act together). Which makes not at least previewing stand out features for a next OSX seem kind of silly. You'd figure now is the time to really say "and in our next generation.." I mean, it has been a very long time since MS was a legitimate competitor on user-involvement/happiness scale. Most people adopted windows because the app they wanted was there, or they needed for work, etc. But Windows made real inroads into the way people perceive the product since October. Now would be a good time for Apple to say "yeah, not so close"

    *shrug* but that's me. From a money viewpoint, you can't blame Apple. There is far more money and a much larger userbase for phones/ipods/ipad then there ever will be for Mac PCs, and much lower overhead, less development cost, etc.
     
  6. Ted Todorov

    Ted Todorov Screenwriter

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    I'm not sure that 10.7 not being announced at WWDC (which is clearly the main reason behind the shift away from Mac OS X emphasis at WWDC) is an indicator of anything other than it not being ready to be announced. It will be next year.

    Yes, iPhone OS devices are making Apple more money than Macs, and clearly portables are the future. But the Mac business is a crucial cornerstone to the company. Steve Jobs would never condemn his loyal customers to having to use Windows machines -- the Mac isn't going away. 10.7 will come.

    Apple does have a problem -- it hires only, really super qualified people -- and there are only so many out there -- the rest don't want to move to California or get jobs at Google or start their own companies. So Apple has to prioritize, and FCP ends up getting a lower priority than iPhone OS X. Why isn't there an AppleTV SDK/app store or major new features? Same reason -- not enough people to go around.

    IMO a better problem to have than Microsoft with its armies of sometimes mediocre programmers producing WinMo 1 to 6.5 or Project Pink or, frankly, Office.
     
  7. mattCR

    mattCR Executive Producer
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    I think this is kind of an unfair shot at developers who go to work for MS, Facebook, Google, Oracle, etc.. you get some of the best and the brightest at all of these places; and all of them, for their development teams, chose people who would be considered rockstars for their fields. And, that's why you've had a lot of poaching of developers back and forth (even MS/apple have had developers leave one to go to the other).

    Part of the issue that will always be in the marketplace, good or bad, is that Apple developers have a set target: they know every detail about the hardware their product will be used on. This lowers the amount of "IF" type scenarios greatly. Meanwhile, anyone developing a windows platform has to worry about thousands of hardware developers, hundreds of thousands of end user models that will run their product, etc. So, it's a much more "moving target" then Apple. Not good or bad, it just is what it is. This isn't saying both companies haven't had some serious fubars. They both have. But even in failure, I don't think you'd say it was the developers fault or that the developer did a really poor job. Sometimes it's that the goal isn't so good or well thought out. Sometimes it's where it goes from there. While the iPhone gets tons of praise, bringing up WinMo 1 is a bit like bringing up the Motorola ROKR to Apple.. Apple Software on someone else's hardware, and that phone =sucked=. It doesn't mean the developers were poor, it just means that the goal wasn't well planned.

    That's the problem here, too.. Mobile is quickly becoming the driving force at apple, which is undeniable. Any business moves to where the money is. But as a result, the other products become redheaded stepchildren. Bluray support is slowed up to stopped, in part because there isn't an outlet for it at all on the mobile side. You can't have a "digital copy" Bluray that can travel with you on an iPad/iPhone/iPod.
    None of that is bad. I do think Apple could win a lot of good will amongst outside developers if they'd say "we're working on XYZ" because third party development houses have felt really pushed to develop primarily ipod/iphone/ipad apps, whereas updates on the other end have been slow, and support for wanted items continues to lag.

    Sometimes, keeping the third party developers happy matters too ;)
     
  8. DaveF

    DaveF Moderator
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    Apple is prioritizing the next paradigm in computing over the old products? Good.

    I consider the iPad a watershed product, the fourth major paradigm shift in computing (after the Apple II, Mac, and Internet). This is the future of computers. I'm watching carefully and considering my shift to the iPad as primary household computer (still buttressed by conventional Mac desktop for my wife's professional work).

    So if Apple has to choose priorities, even ignoring the practical profit growth opportunities, it makes sense to be forward looking. OS X is a mature product, and while shouldn't (can't) be ignored, it's not apparent to me that it needs (or allows) for the intense focus and rapid advancement that the still-young Touch OS needs. Moreover, the Touch OS is potentially such a major advance in personal computing, as well as the future of Apple in general, that it makes sense to prioritize it.

    The company that keeps looking backwards is that one that dies.
     
  9. Carlo Medina

    Carlo Medina Executive Producer

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    Yeah I find myself debating between Pro Tools and Logic Pro, but with Apple's focus on the average consumer, I'm starting to see the writing on the wall and going PT.
     
  10. Brian W. Ralston

    Brian W. Ralston Supporting Actor

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    It is not realllllllllllly Pro Tools unless you are going to install the HD cards Carlo. It is the hardware that gives Pro Tools its power and stability. Sure one can run Pro Tools LE...but at that point, it is just limited software and the other DAWs are much more feature rich and much better supported.

    So if you are doing audio only, want the industry standard and have the money to invest in all the Digidesign (I mean Avid)...nickel and dime features and hardware...then do Pro Tools.

    If you are going to be more midi based in general...but still of course want the power of audio recording and mixing, then you run one of the other DAWs. And if you don't want Apple's Logic for the reasons you alluded to...then in my opinion the only other choice is MOTU's Digital Performer. DP7 is the best version of performer they have ever done in my opinion...and I have been using DP since version 2.7. It also has a very similar feel to Pro Tools. There is even a Pro Tools "window view" one can select. You really should consider DP. You won't be disappointed. (And with DP you can natively export OMF or AAF files that will import into a Pro Tools session just fine, as long as the Pro Tools user payed the extra thousand or whatever it is to have that additional feature).
     
  11. Sam Posten

    Sam Posten Moderator
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    Adobe does have a point, Apple is pretty lazy about not moving their pro applications to 64bit
     
  12. Carlo Medina

    Carlo Medina Executive Producer

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    I hear ya Brian, except that I've made the investment for the Pro Tools Instrument Expansion Pack, and the Strike virtual drummer is pretty insane. It absolutely destroys UltraBeat for what I do (rock music creation, where vocals and guitar are live recordings from me, the rest are virtual instruments). I'm an admitted MIDI novice so I'm glad that Strike takes a lot of the "thinking" out of it for me and I can lay down a pretty good performance with little effort, especially with the new 1.5 version.

    I'm just starting to learn Velvet and Structure, which are also pretty powerful. But yeah, there are definitely other DAW options. Reaper is getting some mad love from those who just want to use a DAW to record and edit.
     
  13. Brian W. Ralston

    Brian W. Ralston Supporting Actor

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    Sam...The move to 64bit in the Pro world...while Pros are really the only folks that really would benefit from the RAM accessibility improvements, is not only expensive, but slow for many reasons. In my case...my audio workstation would not only have to have a 64bit OS...and 64bit drivers for all of my expensive hardware...but the audio program would have to be 64bit...my dozens of virtual instrument programs would have to be 64bit native...my hundreds and hundreds of plug-ins would all have to be 64bit...and due to the nature of how everything works together, they would all have to be upgraded at the same time. A rather expensive endeavor. So Apple I don't think is slow in moving their pro apps to 64bit out of being lazy. It is just that the Pro world does not live on the bleeding edges very well. Stability comes before progress when it comes to business machines. And no one in the pro world who runs studios and facilities that are in use literally every day with work can afford the downtime to work out kinks in a 64bit system. So...the demand to really go there is a bit less. I can do what I need to do now in my 32bit system and it just works. Sure...it would be nice to have my DAW be able to load 32GB of RAM based streaming orchestral instruments all in one system...but it is just not too economically practical just yet.
     
  14. Sam Posten

    Sam Posten Moderator
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    I'd agree with you if we were just talking Music apps. But video creation cries out for 64bitness and that Premiere beat Final Cut to 64bit is pretty weak. Again, reference what Adobe are doing with Mercury and with the GPU acceleration on top of that and Apple has a lot of catching up to do on their own platform.
     
  15. Brian W. Ralston

    Brian W. Ralston Supporting Actor

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    Believe me...digital audio workstations would benefit from it too. I am not saying they wouldn't at all. It is just not a trivial upgrade and due to the cost of putting a studio together (a small one or large one)...it just does not entirely make economic sense to rush there.

    Video editing bays face a similar plight. Most big pictures are edited on a flavor of Avid like Avid Nitrus or Symphony. Then next in line (to a MUCH smaller percentile) would probably be Final Cut. Sometimes the film is edited in an Avid but the titles are done in Final Cut, because the titling tools are a bit better. For color correction, there are very proprietary systems like da Vinci Resolve and Lustra. There is a reason they are not going 64bit quickly either. And Apple, in a move to stay on par with the pro level industry...is most likely following suit with their pacing so they can remain compatible with everyone else.

    No editor I know uses Adobe Premiere. And the ones that do I am sure are more likely in an indie environment where they have the freedom to choose their tools of choice. Adobe probably has a bit more freedom to conform to newer standards more quickly and ride that bleeding edge. But the bleeding edge is an area the pros like to stay away from in general. Most are very leery of building a workflow around unproven and un-battle tested technology.
     
  16. Sam Posten

    Sam Posten Moderator
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    You are thinking too big Brian. There is a revolution underway in HD dslr movie making and Adobe just hit a grand slam in term of both ease of use and speed with Premiere CS5. Sure the established houses are going to find it tough to move off their established (very expensive) seats of whatever they are using right now, but Adobe has set the bar for tools that -tens of thousands- of new enthusiasts to hit the ground running with.
     
  17. Brian W. Ralston

    Brian W. Ralston Supporting Actor

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    But that kind of makes my point at the end there. They are not the pro market. They are enthusiasts. They are the consumer market. Pro-sumers maaaaaaybe. But the pro level market is slow to adapt for very good reasons and hence if Apple is truly going to cater to the Pro level market on things...they kind of have to play by their rules for their pro level software...which things like Final Cut & Logic Pro are.

    While HD SLR cameras can bring high quality tools into the hands of the consumer...the hardware is a toy compared to the level of equipment that is being used by industry professionals. Sure...some use it for effect. Just like some still shoot on 16mm film for effect. It has come a long way...but it is no where close to the Panasonic, Sony and Panavision cameras used. I guess it really just comes down to who one is defining to be "Pro" and who is that pro market that Apple and others consider targeting with their products.

    :)
     
  18. Carlo Medina

    Carlo Medina Executive Producer

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    I kind of define "pro" as what the professionals in the industry use, or in Apple's case, what they pit against that software (Logic Pro vs. Pro Tools, FCS vs. Avid). Now that same software can be used by enthusiasts/prosumers/etc. I certainly am not a pro, but I am trying to learn to use pro software.

    However I don't consider the converse yet to be true: as great as Premiere CS5 may be, if industry pros aren't using it, then it's not *yet* pro software. As Brian said, if you're not catering to those whose livelihood depends on the stability of your product, then you can be cutting edge and risk a bit.

    That said, to get back to the original point of the thread, it's clear that beginning with the launch of the iPod, and really cranking it up with the release of the iPhone, iPhone OS and iPad, Apple is moving resources away from the Pro market. As someone said, they only have so many programmers, and an undertaking the size of the iPhone (hardware), iPhone OS, and iPad can only serve to hog those resources. Heck, we've seen slowdown in the release of OSX incremental updates in comparison to pre-iPhone updates. And now that they outsource most of the guts of their Macs to Intel/Nvidia/ATI, really the only revolutionary thing they've done in the past few years are changing the enclosures. Otherwise they are leveraging third party technologies for their Macs. So I think it's nearly an "all hands on deck" approach at Apple, with their best people working on iPhone/iPad and their associated OS, at the expense of nearly everything else hardware/software that Apple traditionally worked on.

    EDIT: I think I am beginning to see Apple's quandary. They don't have the resources to go head to head for the enthusiast markets, many of whom are used to Adobe's CS suite anyway. And they historically have gone after the "pro" or near-pro market, and it's hard to switch gears and say "okay we were going after Avid's software/users, but now we're going after Adobe's users" and quickly change the software to support that goal, especially with the amount of manpower they're throwing behind iPhone/iPad.
     
  19. DaveF

    DaveF Moderator
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    Apple's quandry is clear to anyone who's worked in science / engineering and it comes down to this: Nine women can't give birth in one month. It's a snarky way of countering the common belief that you can get more work done by throwing more people at the problem. Apple appears to be managing the quality challenge by maintaining their staffing quality (probably growing in a paced way) and shifting resources to according to priorities. A lesser company would simply hire rapidly, bulk up the staff and throw people at all the tasks and try and keep them going equally fast as before. Then they risk of hiring lower quality people, and getting lower quality results.

    Or: Apple looks at the revenue and it's not worth putting more people into niche, pro media tools. That's probably a negligible portion of their revenue right now.

    Speculating further: I bet there are heated arguments about whether to sell off these product lines.
     
  20. Carlo Medina

    Carlo Medina Executive Producer

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    And I think that is what chaps people's hides. When Apple wasn't doing so hot, it was the niche market who kept them afloat. Now that they're riding high on the success of the iPod/iPhone/iPad, that user base who was their lifeline is now, as you say, a negligible portion of their revenue, and are being treated as such. Still, there is an old proverb about dancing with the girl who brought ya...even if she isn't as hot as the new one you hooked up with at the dance. [/url]

    Or: Apple looks at the revenue and it's not worth putting more people into niche, pro media tools. That's probably a negligible portion of their revenue right now.

    Speculating further: I bet there are heated arguments about whether to sell off these product lines.
     

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