After reporting record earnings made on the back of record iPhone sales many are now wondering how Apple will maintain these record breaking numbers. What new product will help Apple to pass the incredible $19 billion profit mark for a single quarter? What will be Apple’s next big thing?
For a product to make it into the Next Big Thing (NBT) category it must be a game changer, it must take something ordinary and make it amazing. Think iPod, iPhone and iPad, all must have devices that revolutionized their segments and all segments that were due for a revolution.
The Apple Watch isn’t going to be in the NBT category, the segment isn’t revolutionary and if anything Apple will just be playing catch-up on this one. While many commentators are arguing the watch will be a revolutionary health monitoring device that still isn’t enough to make it a must have device for everyone.
In the last few weeks websites around the web have been lighting up with news of Apple’s automotive aspirations. Internally known as Project Titan by Apple the project has been attracting much attention due to the advertisement of a number of engineering jobs that require automotive experience. The rumour mill was also sent into overdrive by the many images of their camera touting vans touring around Palo Alto with 360 degree imaging cameras mounted atop. Apple will not comment on unreleased products leading many to speculate the vans are a sign of Apple producing its own StreetView while others wonder if this is self-driving technology in testing.
Here at Highpants we believe Project Titan won’t be an Apple made electric car but instead the technology developed by Titan will become the brains and interface for existing car manufacturers. A new industry standard auto brain that will enable self-driving and parking along with interface improvements and seamless integration of other Apple products.
The complexity of the interface of modern cars suggests that Apple could be onto a massive winner with this concept. If BMW were to replace their long winded iDrive interface with an Apple interface BMW cars could be many magnitudes simpler to operate. This is definitely a market due for a revolution. All of this adds up to Project Titan being a long term project with enormous potential, possibly the next NBT.
Speculation of an Apple TV have been bouncing around the internet for many years now, is the time finally right for Apple to enter the TV wars? The current resolution and technology transitions are causing a shake-up in the TV industry which may make it just the right time for an Apple TV revolution.
Not only is the world transitioning to higher resolution displays but the world of TV is also going through its own internet revolution, a revolution that current televisions are struggling to keep up with. The transition away from a centralized cable box services to internet based TV services, think TV as a Service, requires a new way of bringing all of these services together.
The key to pulling it off though is down to something Apple is very good at, bringing together all of the different players and product differentiation. They can’t just sell another large screen TV; they need to sell a large screen iMac for the living room that brings all of the latest internet TV services together.
Here at Highpants we’d like to the hardware be able to run all desktop and mobile apps but also run games in 4K hi-colour, true 32bit, which will require a dedicated GPU. This will require the TV to run OS-X but also be able to run iOS apps and games through emulation. Initially only two or three screen sizes are required (4K Nano LCD 50, 55, 65) and only one hardware spec (low power i7 quad core, mid-range GPU setup, 8GB ram, 256GB SSD).
Whatever the new product may be an announcement is expected at the next big Apple conference, which ironically is also the subject of much speculation. Earlier this month news of Apple planning an event for Feb 24 emerged, the date and event are still to be confirmed by Apple but many are waiting with baited breath. Failing that this year’s WWDC 2015 developer’s conference, June 8 – 12 2015, may be the right time and place to reveal the Next Big Thing.
Reference: Business Insider – Apple Car
Reference: Wall Street Journal – Apple Car
Reference: TechRadar – Apple Watch
Reference: PC Mag – iWatch is not Apple’s Next Big Thing
Reference: CNBC – Next Event
Reference: MacRumors – Apple Van