Pete’s post yesterday, “Hello: Macs Are About to Get Interesting Again“, was pure Mortensen: articulate, insightful, well researched, and on the topic of Apple needing to change designs, dead wrong.
While the Macbook / Pro line as well as the MacPro’s are essentially indistinguishable from their predecessors, that’s not necessarily a bad thing. It’s a design philosophy that has powered BMW and Mercedes for a good long while. To that end, other than adding bling to satisfy a generation of new money rappers, Rolex has never fundamentally changed the design of the Datejust, Daytona, or Day/Date (aka President) watches.
The point: A classic is a classic.
Watch a television program. The majority of the time they show someone working on a laptop, it’s a Macbook Pro. Sure, it might have a Pear or an Orange on the back, and sometimes a nasty sticker of some sorts, but it’s identifiably a MBPro.
When a product’s design is raised in the cultural consciousness to be synonymous with the artifact it’s portraying (eg MBPro = Laptop), it becomes the archetype for that artifact. It means that whenever a consumer goes laptop shopping, their mental image for a laptop is of a Apple Macbook Pro, and any other purchasing decision they make will be an explicit compromise from the archetype. This is not just a crazy theory of Leigh’s, Apple’s sales figures in the high-end laptop space prove this out.
Apple has attained this rarified place in the minds of consumers, with both the iPod and Macbook Pro lines. That is the very LAST time to fundamentally change a design.