Steve Jobs on Apple's Unique Assets

At MacWorld New York 1998 Steve Jobs talked about how Apple was going to go after the consumer space via the iMac. He mentioned three unique assets Apple had (aside from the products themselves) that would allow them to make it happen:

  1. Brand
  2. Design
  3. Simplicity

I think those three things are just as applicable today as they were back in 1998. With things like smart phones and tablets becoming more and more ubiquitous (and not much differentiation with hardware) and the wearable space heating up I think this is where Apple can succeed over its competitors.

  1. The Apple brand is still incredibly aspirational but I think it's taken some knocks over the past few years. Apple needs to get back on its a game with respect to marketing and brand positioning. And contrary to some, I don't think that means Apple needs to go on the attack ala Samsung. They just need to bring some fun and edginess back to their ads and lay off the softer, quieter side for now.
  2. Apple needs to continue its lead in cutting edge hardware design and beef up its efforts in software design. Hopefully with all design now residing under one executive the software side of the house will start to improve.
  3. And with regards to simplicity this is one area I think Apple really has the edge over its competitors but there's still a lot they can do to make things more simple, intuitive and easy to use. And I think they could focus more of their marketing in this area as well. Focus on all the bloatware that their competitors have in their products. Features for the sake of features that don't really provide a better user experience. Show how Apple's products are easier to use especially for first time users.

Honestly I hope Angela Ahrendts and Jony Ive are joined at the hip as I think the two of them together will make a great team. And I hope some of the new additions to Phil Schiller's organization kick up the marketing department a notch. I think this is the year Apple has its best opportunity to blow people away and prove all the naysayers wrong. I'm really looking forward to it.