It’s finally happened. Apple has pumped out enough iPods, iPhones, and iPads to become the most valuable technology company in the world, surpassing software giant Microsoft in the market cap. Ten years ago, Apple was basically left for dead, but with a little innovation from cofounder and chief exec Steve Jobs and a lot of great new products, the software company is now valued at $222.12 billion, trailing only to Exxon Mobil as the highest valued American company. And while Jobs has yet to beat the giant, he has certainly taken the golden harp.
So how did this happen? The answer is in your hand; it’s your iPod, your iPhone, and now, it’s your iPad. Simply put, Jobs and Apple have profoundly changed the user experience – and they’ve done it through products that are sleek, fashionable, and highly functional. The iPod revolutionized the way we listened to our music, just as the iPhone made Smartphones more accessible and appealing to a much broader audience. And now the iPad, no matter how strange as it may seem, aims to change the way we think about our portable computers and how we use them.
This key is innovation. Jobs recognized the need for adaptable, mobile technology, even before anyone else did. Today, consumers demand technology innovations that are nimble, accessible, and practical. Touch screens seem much more sensible than an attached keyboard, just as a phone that acts as a computer is more efficient than two separate products. For too long, Microsoft has pushed the norm, and now has to play catch up while Apple continues to push the industry frontier.
As Mr. Jobs himself said, “Innovation distinguishes between a leader and a follower.” We couldn’t agree more.