Everything’s better and faster. How could Apple be so boring?

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Tim Cook bores the world with even more amazing Apple products. Yawn. Photo: Apple
Tim Cook bores the world with even more amazing Apple products. Yawn. Photo: Apple

Was Apple’s livestreamed iPad event really such a big yawn? Search Twitter for “#AppleEvent yawn” or “Apple boring” and you’ll see tweet after tweet bemoaning the boring nature of Thursday’s press conference. It got so tedious for some, there were dozens of photos of napping dogs.

“Most boring Apple event ever,” tweeted one. “Bring back the Chinese translation.”

Maybe some of those folks are being facetious, but there’s a grain of truth in the tweets: Nothing about Thursday’s event, except for maybe Stephen Colbert’s crackup comedy bit with Craig Federighi, was super-compelling on the surface. Many of the specs had been leaked (some even by Apple itself), and the rumor mill proved pretty accurate in the run-up to the presentation.

Still, this was no Phantom Menace. I mean really, what were people expecting? Jetpacks, aliens and electric cars?

This is Apple’s big dilemma right now: How do you top yourself when you make the best products in the world?

Putting aside all the typical statistical huffing and puffing about how great iPhone 6 sales are and how amazing iOS 8 uptake is, Thursday’s announcements add up to one thing: Apple products are better and cheaper than ever, and they work together more seamlessly so we can accomplish tasks more easily.

Anywhere other than Planet Apple, this would be beyond amazing. Unfortunately, Cupertino has blown our minds so routinely that even wonderfully powerful products can start to seem commonplace.

“This is the strongest lineup of products that Apple has ever had,” said Apple CEO Tim Cook near the end of Thursday’s hour-long presentation, “and we believe that each one of these play a very important role. People need different types of technology.”

The press event was all about incremental updates to Apple’s already great gear — and the deployment of OS X Yosemite.

Most if not all of the fancy features Cook and Co. touted with regard to the Yosemite and its interoperability with iOS 8 had been revealed by Apple at this spring’s Worldwide Developers Conference. Now the Word has been made flesh, as it were, and will soon dwell among us, thanks to the OS updates and all the developers building apps to take advantage of Continuity, Handoff and Extensibility.

In a very real way, Thursday was the fulfillment of the wide-ranging prophecy of an interconnected world that Apple laid out last June.

On some level, it’s easy to understand why people might break bad on Thursday’s announcements. The product line refreshes — Retina 5K iMacs; thinner, faster iPads; cheaper, more powerful Mac minis — were basically just extensions of the ever-sweetening value proposition we’ve all come to expect, spoiled as we are by the relentless march of technology.

In Apple’s case, it’s a little like Superman doing some weightlifting so he can bench-press a few more boxcars. The best just got even better (particularly when it comes to the thinner-than-a-pencil iPad Air 2).

Naturally, anytime Cupertino commands our attention, we’re all hoping for something magical and transformative, but it’s simply ludicrous to expect that Apple would unveil some astonishing new product just a month after giving the world it’s first look at the Apple Watch.

Remember when Star Wars movies were good, and each entry in the original trilogy took us to new and exciting places? Just imagine if The Phantom Menace had been better than Return of the Jedi, and then Attack of the Clones and Revenge of the Sith each raised the bar rather than turning into dreadful sci-fi slogs.

Star Wars fans would still be excited about J.J. Abrams’ upcoming Episode VII, but that excitement wouldn’t come from a place of such pent-up desire — we wouldn’t be hoping against hope for something that’s merely passable to wash away the stench of previous years.

Apple is like a talented director who keeps making enthralling films, each just a little bit more fantastic than the last. Despite minor missteps over the years, and the dark days when Steve Jobs was in exile from the company he loved, Apple has never truly delivered a piece of crap.

Critics have dinged Cupertino for its lack of openness, its premium pricing strategy and its occasionally haughty attitude. But if they’re truly honest with themselves, they can’t actually fault the company’s inexorable progress toward ever-greater products. That’s what we got a taste of Thursday — a confident company that’s continually moving forward and making great things even better and more useful.

Spec boosts aside, Thursday’s most exciting moment came after Cook’s reiteration of the “something for everyone” aspect of Apple’s lineup — the big new screens for when you want to work at a desk, the powerful laptops when you need that kind of computing firepower away from home, the thinner iPads for when you want to touch all that beautiful stuff, and the iPhone 6 and Apple Watch for when you want all that wondrous technology in the palm of your hand or on your wrist.

“This is our vision of personal technology,” Cook said, “and we are just getting started.”

If that’s not exciting, what is?

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61 responses to “Everything’s better and faster. How could Apple be so boring?”

  1. manometate says:

    Never delivered a piece of crap? Well, there’s the hockey puck mouse. That was garbage. The mighty mouse and, actually, pretty much every mouse Apple ever made. The iPhone 4 and 4s were made almost entirely of GLASS. My kid broke THREE of them, in cases. The iPhone headset was a small offering but it was HORRIBLE. Apple replaced FOUR for me and then AppleCare ran out. The last one only works marginally. It was nice looking but it didn’t stay in your ear and it had terrible sound. The Single Core Mac mini is junk. Also, the iPod HiFi failed to deliver the audiophile sound Steve Jobs promised.

    Sure, these are all minor offerings but not one of them was worthy of the Apple Brand. They were all pieces of crap.

    • tHoj101 says:

      Maybe you should teach your kid about owning valuables, and they won’t break three phones. I owned an iPhone 4 for nearly 4 years before just upgrading to an iPhone 6. Barley a scratch on it – no case.

    • The Gnome says:

      I’ll never get the few minutes it took me to read your little story and laugh. Sounds like you need to join the Android crowd, they are a good bit of whiners.

    • Whocares says:

      In summary: Trolling!

    • Erlend Mørch says:

      Get a new kid. I’ve dropped my 4S often and it doesn’t have a single crack

    • bytheway says:

      Still have a 4Sin near-perfect condition which is used for overseas travel, not one crack or scratch as it lives in a case except for when cleaning. teach your child the value of money and she will not squander it

    • Barrett Jasper says:

      WOW, you don’t get out much. Almost every product you mentioned was awesome in it’s prime except maybe the mice. If you went through FOUR pairs of headphones it’s YOU….I’ve had the same earbuds I got with my iPhone 3G and they still work today perfectly and I don’t take special care of them, just use them and toss in a bag when done. the single core mini was just that a budget machine but to say junk is asinine. People STILL buy the G4 minis for home media servers not to mention newer models. If you let a kid have a phone it’s going to break….duh. I’m a huge XDA and Android fan/contributor but you should stay over there I think. The water is much cooler.

    • CelestialTerrestrial says:

      Maybe your kid shouldn’t own a smartphone until they learn not to destroy the thing. They weren’t made entirely out of glass, just the front and back, but the actual shell was aluminum. Your kid was probably shattering the glass, which is easy to do on any phone since all decent phones use Gorilla Glass.

    • CelestialTerrestrial says:

      What company hasn’t produced a crappy product? At least Apple’s getting better as time goes on, I think that ALL companies can always improve, that’s why they introduce newer models each year.

    • dba7 says:

      OS X server hardware and Xserve RAID were crap.

    • boydp182 says:

      Damn man. Maybe you should quit buying Apple products if you hate them so much. The mouse is great. Love my apple mouse. Genius invention. Best mouse I have ever used. I personally loved the Apple phone made of all glass. I would say it’s a stretch to say they have never made a piece of crap though in all there history. Not sure if that statement is true in the article.

  2. stickyicky97 says:

    How about an AppleTV refresh with more storage in order to allow a dedicated app store for it? Or a formal universal (Xbox style) controller to make it easier for game developers to incorporate? There are so many tweaks and things they could have announced today. Google is going to leave them in the dust with their new Nexus products released yesterday. I love my AppleTV, but it just feels so dated and under-utilized. Come on Apple!

    • Morgan Blackpowder says:

      “Google is going to leave them in the dust with their new Nexus products release yesterday.” -Stickyicky97

      I’ve heard that every time a nexus product is released. When is it going to leave them in the dust? So far the sales figures have said otherwise.

      • Edwin Ramirez says:

        And market share says otherwise.

      • tralalalalalala37 says:

        android market share is a myth, only 6% of android phones support google play, there are over 20000 android devices, but 94% have nothing to do with google and have been completely forked and localized (like linux). google isn’t making money off it, developers aren’t making money off it, and the users aren’t getting a uniform experience which is why they switch to iphones when they can afford it.

    • Edwin Ramirez says:

      Google left Apple in the dust so long ago that the dust has settled.

      • CelestialTerrestrial says:

        Google? hahahaha. FYI, google is a different type of company in how they derive revenues and profits. They have a completely different model. It’s kind of stupid to compare, but just to remind you, Apple makes a LOT more profits than Google does, at least Apple can get 90% of their user base to run the latest OS versions within a year after being released. By the time Google gets their install base of Android to the current OS by 25%, they introduce a new release and at the rate Google is going, they’ll never have their users using the same release of OS. They can’t even get the Android phones on the market to even run the latest OS since they still sell out of date and obsolete 4 year old phones running Android 2.

      • Edwin Ramirez says:

        Why should we care how these companies earn their money? What does any of that have to do with the fact that Apple has been playing catch-up with the rest of the industry for years?
        Oh about those low end cheap phones, Google’s answer is Android One.
        The way I see it, Google is facing the same problem as Microsoft, that comes with dominating a market: not everyone buys the latest and greatest. That’s why Microsoft hasn’t been able to get rid of people using Windows XP.

      • CelestialTerrestrial says:

        I think Google has abandoned the thought of 64 Bit Android since even the Nexus 6 isn’t even 64 BIt. What freakin losers. By the time Apple makes the full transition, Google may just be releasing their first release. Major fail.

      • Edwin Ramirez says:

        I find it curious that the Nexus 6 didn’t come with a 64 bit processor.

        But the advantage they, Google, have is that they don’t have to. The rest of manufacturers will probably be pushing 64bit processor devices in a month or two and Android L already supports 64bit computing.

        Apple takes 2-3 years in adopting any new feature. I think Google can have the luxury of waiting a full year to include 64bit computing in their next Nexus.

      • tralalalalalala37 says:

        it will be years. trying to build a working android phone is like herding cats. their stuff doesn’t mesh and it never will as well as the iphone. if you want to tinker and fix things, but an android.

  3. JohnyMyko says:

    I think this one was boring because of the way they presented it. Craig felt out of his usual great rhythm, Phil looked bored instead of excited and Tim didn’t had that spark he had in the previous iPhone 6 keynote. I wasn’t expecting anything big to come out and I knew most of the stuff because of the leaks, but I really think it was boring mostly because of the way the presenters itself gave us the news.

    • seth walker says:

      felt rushed, like the iOS 8 release.Heres to 8.1 gaining another 48% ;)

    • Jim says:

      I don’t know where this notion comes from that every Apple event used to be exciting. This reminded me very much of the 4S introduction in 2011. Small crowd, same room and 1 major product update. The in-house October event is always quite boring. They use it to push out the new iPads (we’re in an S year for those so it wasn’t going to be exciting) and release all of the software they put into beta at the start of the Summer. The exciting Apple events are September and WWDC. This was just a run of the mill product line refresh, which I’m not gonna fault them for.

      • CelestialTerrestrial says:

        No, I think it’s because the rumor mill finds out about 90% of what’s coming out long before the announcement and that’s what takes the fun out of the product announcments. Plus Cook is just boring to listen to. He doesn’t have the same panache as Steve did. Steve gave you goosebumps and Cook makes you want someone else to get on stage instead.

    • tralalalalalala37 says:

      they did seem more tired, probably because they are going to sell over 60 million phones in one quarter. lol
      in reality, they should do one event a year for hardware and one event a year for software.

  4. T_Will says:

    I’m guessing those guys are just literally physically tired from the iPhone 6/6+/iOS 8/iPad Air 2/iMac 5K/Yosemite/Apple Watch push that has been happening for the past year (and more).

  5. Ash says:

    Whine. Whine. Whine. That’s what’s boring.

    The presentation just needed to be shorter considering they just had a huge presentation a month ago and the announcements were more spec related and already leaked. There was nothing much to build a new narrative around (which is what makes a presentation interesting). This was just a continuation of the narrative from the September presentation. It should have been quick and snappy. That’s all. No big deal.

    BTW my iPhone 4 was great. Dropped it all the time with no case. Didn’t break once.

  6. Anthony Medel says:

    These days, people confuse new with better. They just want constant, neverending improvement every year. If you want new features just for the sake of having new features, go with Android. In our consumer culture, we want new and improved everything, even if it doesn’t need much or any improving. I’m totally fine with taking a year or even two off from refreshed everything in exchange for fine tuning what already exists. Apple and technology in general will grow over the decades no matter what. No need to force its hand.

    • Airfresher says:

      Once again, features are alwaya not needed until Apple implements them. That’s when those ‘new’ features become so important and useful.

  7. Russ Hughes says:

    So boring you’ve spent the last few hours reporting it. Desperate articles are even more tedious.

  8. Alex Blaha says:

    What was disappointing for me was that they didn’t release a new iPod touch or Apple TV. I mean are we gonna go /another/ year with these products? I understand the iPod touch doesn’t have the greatest market out there, but still, you have to give something new so there is a market. The current iPod touch has an A5 chip, same as the iPhone 4S, and the battery still sucks soooo badly just like all of the older models. The most exciting thing released today was the Retina iMac. There is just so much work to be done to iOS 8, and it aggravates me that they’re promoting it as such a great new OS with all these new features. But really the truth is that a lot of these features are dependent on developers. Apple is currently lacking innovation. Touch ID was about the last thing I remember that was truly innovative from Apple. I have high hopes for Apple next year, when hopefully developers get their act together along with Apple to give these great new features some worth.

    • CelestialTerrestrial says:

      About the only thing Apple could do to the iPods to make them cool would be to get them to 24/192 capabilities, give them bigger screens to play games, but the problem is that there simply isn’t enough 24 bit content on the market and the majority of people don’t know or really care since they listen to crap commercial pop/hip hop music that doesn’t sound any better no matter what you do to it.

      • gUiTaRlUvEr says:

        Amen! As a fellow audiophile I agree completely. I’m so sick and tired of hearing this heavily compressed “Music” devoid of any dynamics that record labels keep regurgitating. I was hoping this would prove to be an ephemeral style of music production but the loudness war continues. Anyway, an iPhone with 24/192 capabilities would be quite a treat! :) However it would need to have at least 500 gigs of storage to hold most of my High Res music.

    • boydp182 says:

      I agree. They are lacking innovation. There products are getting a bit stale and they need to do something again that wows. I would love to see them do something that is a “concept” that you see all over the web. There are just some wonderful concept ideas and Apple needs to be rolling those types of products out asap.

  9. josephz2va says:

    I think the reason they’re calling it boring is they miss the days of Steve Jobs innovation or they’re not true Apple fans.

    • seth walker says:

      I agree. But what can you do. Steve picked Tim. Now people should shut it. haha

      • CelestialTerrestrial says:

        Yeah, but Tim’s not exactly doing a great job in all respects. He’s pushing back product announcements to the end of the year. Apple’s profits have been off for two years. He bought Beats, which was a mistake, he gave Iovine and Dre jobs which was a mistake, he doesn’t know how to give a great presentation, he doesn’t understand how to sell something since he’s never been a sales person. He doesn’t get it sometimes. There are products they SHOULD have, but don’t and there are certain things they should have done to improve the current line up. I think Cook needs to pay attention to the Corporate and Professionals instead of focusing too much on the consumer market. They really need to replace the iTunes software developers. It needs MAJOR improvement.

      • boydp182 says:

        I kind of agree. Jobs gone was a big loss because it was his business and it’s hard to replace that passion. Tim could just move on and become a CEO somewhere else where Apple was Jobs life and his creation. I haven’t been real pleased with Apple in the last few years either. They need to step up there innovation a little more. The biggest disapointment was the 6 plus. Its too big. It’s crazy when Samsung managed to squeeze a bigger screen into a smaller device. Shame on Apple for making the 6 plus bigger than it needed to be.

  10. seth walker says:

    This is where Steve is missed. I NEVER use that as an excuse…but he had a charmisa that not many people have ever had. Tim is great, but they need someone like Jimmy I, or even someone else to do these.I think that would shift the media’s mind to be more in sync with how really awesome these products are.

    Was it me, or was there a lot of studdering from Tim and others. I wonder if they run through this as much as Steve did?

    Either way, its an exciting time to be owning Apples products.
    I wish they would have made fun of themselves for the 8.0.1 blunder.

    • CelestialTerrestrial says:

      Iovine is an idiot. He’s NOT the right guy, he shouldn’t have even been hired. I would much rather see Jony give a presentation, but I don’t think he has the time to prepare since he’s a busy person, but he’d be the best one. I’d like to see Angela do something, but she’s only doing the Apple Stores, which isn’t that exciting to talk about since it’s pretty cut and dry stuff. Cue is an idiot too.

  11. erie_glass says:

    Do we really need a new Apple TV? I just got mine in May and am absolutely in love with it. I use it primarily as a Netflix and iTunes movie rental device, so for my uses it’s absolutely perfect. Plus with the new look they just released it looks sleek and new. I understand that some people would like to do more advanced things with it, but for its primary purpose (as a streaming device), I think it’s very fast and does its job very well.

  12. The Gnome says:

    People would have complained if Apple didn’t stream the event, but now it wasn’t exciting enough. Apparently people need a magical new device category at every outing or Apple sucks.

    #firstworldproblems #whinyidiots

  13. Jim says:

    I’m not disagreeing with you. It was a fairly run-of-the-mill event but the first thing you mention in this article is ridiculous. Of course if you search “apple boring” you’re going to see tweets about how apple is boring. If I search “Madonna is a reanimated Romanian vampire” I’m going to see tweets about her being a reanimated Romanian vampire…

    I’ve really grown to hate this site. You’re not even posting your real opinions. You’re just under instructions to write the most controversial headlines possible to get to the top of Digg and Reddit. This site sucks now. I’m out.

  14. Calion says:

    “Apple has never truly delivered a piece of crap.”

    You forget the Apple III.

  15. Hildebrand says:

    Speak for yourself. I yawn half way reading your story.

  16. SilverCha0s says:

    I am not sure Apple do make the best products in the world #justsaying

  17. Costa K says:

    As someone once said, “Everything is awesome yet no one is happy…”

  18. Aannddyy says:

    I thought it was fine. I wasn’t expecting much more then what they offered and I appreciated the humor. And, I just bought a new iPad Air 2

  19. Brandon says:

    Woah, Lewis Wallace, hitting that special age, are we?

    That keynote was amazing and fun.

  20. lucascott says:

    of course it was boring. There was no 60 inch flat screen TV or iCar or whatever else the geeks have been screaming Apple simply MUST do

  21. Edwin Ramirez says:

    Apple has been boring for years, some people just take longer to realize that.

  22. Bangali says:

    The iPad needs stereo speakers, one on EACH SIDE! what is the point f them both on one side?! should’ve added split screen support. Allow the iPhone 6 to rotate. iPads needed redesign – these aren’t not ipad air S’s..Apple TV needs refresh – add storage & a controller for games support!

  23. boydp182 says:

    The thing that bugs me the most about Apple is that they are still including 16gb in there lineup. That’s ridiculous. Should be 32, 64, 128. It actually pisses me off. I also want them to stay with premium products always and not appeal to the cheaper crowd. People want to spend more money on a quality product-something that is severely lacking in our culture today. I hope they continue to do that.

    I would love to see a pimped out/concept type iPhone that is a premium, premium model that is $1200-$1500 bucks or $599 on a contract just to see what they would come up with. People would buy it and I would love to see them make something like that and get creative and let the consumer decide if they want to buy it or not.

  24. tralalalalalala37 says:

    I’m just happy the ipad air2 is demolishing the competition in comparison to any mobile device out there.

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