Newsletter Issue #582: The Eternal Search for Apple’s Table Scraps

January 24th, 2011

I haven’t considered this, but how many Web sites are devoted to rumors about Dell products? What about HP? Although both companies rule the PC roost, it’s not as if people are clamoring for tidbits of information as to their next tech gadgets. That’s because these companies rely mostly on commodity products (generic PCs, servers, and printers), and thus seldom do anything to advance the state of the art in the tech industry.

This isn’t to say that the equipment built by Dell, HP, and similar companies, is necessarily bad. HP, for example, seems to provide good quality, and decent customer support. When it comes to the needs of their regular customers, that’s probably sufficient. Indeed, I’ve owned HP printers over the years, and found them to be well-built and quite reliable.

Then again, has there really been that much innovation in printer technology? Most of the products you buy seem to be nothing but variations on the very same theme. Yes, new ink jet printers may have more features at the same price, and put more tiny dots on the page to provide somewhat better print quality. But you still pay an arm and a leg for the consumables, which is where the profits are really made.

When it comes to Apple’s gear, they aren’t afraid to upset the business by killing products, and moving into new directions. Don’t forget how the iPod nano has undergone vast changes in form factor and feature sets, something almost no other tech company would dare with a successful product.

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