John C Dvorak, Leo Laporte, and a couple of other folks involved in This Week in Tech (TwiT) had a meeting together at the Apple campus at 1 Infinite Loop in Cupertino this past Monday, and they ended up having an informal battle of the navigation apps in the three cars they were each driving. TWiT CEO Lisa Kentzell and marketing guy Glenn Rubenstein were in one car, using Apple Maps, while Laporte was using Waze, Dvorak using Google Maps.
Dvorak wrote the story up over at PC Magazine, and claims that Apple Maps got the TWiT folks to the Apple campus faster than either Waze, which came in dead last, or Google Maps. We can count on this being the truth of their experience, as anyone of Dvorak’s stature might have a hard time admitting that he lost a race.
Tech journalists make bad calls all the time, but few tech writers have made such a blisteringly bad call as seasoned columnist John C. Dvorak, who famously predicted back in 2007 that “Apple should pull the plug on the iPhone… [because it is just] going to be another phone in a crowded market.”
D’oh. $150 billion in revenue later, the iPhone is the biggest success Apple has ever had, and revolutionized pretty much every single aspect of the smartphone and even telecom business. That’s quite the missed prediction, even by tech journalist standards.
So what does Dvorak have to say to explain himself? Was it just a brain fart, or what? Five years later, Dvorak has explained why he said the iPhone would be a dud, and his excuse is fascinating: he claims he got it wrong because of a conspiracy against tech journalists like him who were too honest about Apple for their own good.