Making Bets On The Future Is Risky

Jon Porter on Apple being ready to admit it was wrong about the future of laptops:

Whether that’s because Apple is more dominant when it comes to smartphones or just because the benefits of wireless audio were more obvious to people than USB-C accessories, people seem to have been far more ready to roll with Apple’s annoying headphone jack decision. There’s a valid debate to be had about whether Apple kicked off a trend towards wireless audio or whether its move just turbocharged one that was already taking place, but either way, Apple made a bet that the future of smartphone audio was wireless, and for all intents and purposes, it seems to have paid off.

It is unusual for Apple to be early into new spaces of technology it is not unusual on them making bets on the future of computing. Some of these fail (butterfly keyboards), some of them take a long time to come to fruition (flash), and some are forced through simply because Apple is behind them (headphone jacks). All of these are calculated by people far more intelligent than you or I, but theses always those waiting around to point some fingers. Generally speaking Apple seem to take the approach that in computing it’s better to be at the front and corse correct when possible, then be behind and risk missing the boat entirely.

Whilst the linked post above is vastly exaggerated, it’s great to see Apple willing to make corrections when needed. With that said replacing the SD card slot is not admitting they were wrong on USB-C at all, as pointed out they just don’t have the clout to push forward like they do on mobile. Most devices seem to still be sold with a USB-A cable at least on one end, and with so many brands dragging their heels it becomes a drag to carry around a dongle but not as bad as others seem to make out.

Apple didn’t put USB-A ports back in their laptops, but they did concede the the future is not as wireless as they might have thought. Unfortunately just a few months after admitting their bet on the future of keyboards they now return to a macBook that argues it has “pro-level” connectivity, when in fact it has a similar set up to a macBook found in 2015. Ouch.

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