Being Ahead Of Your Time - Apple's Newton & iPad

The term "PDA" (personal digital assistant) was coined around Apple's Newton. Launched in 1993 at a price of $699, the Newton project was thought by many to be an abject failure (Jobs cancelled it shortly after terminating John Sculley) - but was it ? Reflecting on its history, the device was ahead of its time and technology. Consider that in September 2009, Michael Tchao, one of the Newton's marketing product champions, returned to Apple to join the iPad team and two ex-Apple Newton developers founded Pixo, the company that created the operating system for the original iPod. in fact, the nexus for iPad was Newton. (Kim Arnold shares this view here).

When writing or speaking about the future and the rapid pace of technological change that is and will increasingly impact everyone (particularly in the fitness and wellness arena) ; its often good to reflect on past "failures", seeing where they ultimately end up. The tablet market is now the 4th largest consumer electronics category in the world at nearly $9 billion annually.What does that say about Newton ?

So what do you think ? Please let me, Bryan O'Rourke, here from you. Was Newton a failure ? Watch the iPad and Newton commercials below. I think there are some similarities don't you ?

IPad - Implications for the Publishing Industry

There is a revolution emerging in the publishing business.  VIVmag, a digital lifestyle magazine available online, will introduce an iPad version of its content when the Apple device is released next month. The implications of this type of content delivery become pretty clear when you look at what the "magazine" (if you can call it that) will be like. Its shown in the video below.

VIV Mag Motion Cover - iPad Demo from Alexx Henry on Vimeo.


The video offers a user experience preview that readers can expect for iPad versions of digital "magazines". Like the video from Wired released last month, this and other magazines are getting ready to offer touch and video among other ground breaking experiences.

VIVmag’s chief marketing officer, said the magazine planned to make its digital issues interactive with video and full-motion advertising, including a Fandango HBO “Sex and the City 2″ advertisement and interactive spreads for Kia Motors and Estée Lauder.

This type of super interactivity isn’t going to come cheap. The magazine cost $36 for a yearly subscription of six editions, or $6 an issue. “It is an expensive process,” CMO Mullen said. “It takes the same amount of time to create as a print edition, but we’re creating a living product that is fully dynamic.” This behind-the-scenes video about the creative process used to deliver the digital content gives one an idea of what it takes.

Watch this video from Wired on the new world of publishing.

Move to Mobility Continues With Misunderstood iPad

For all the controversy around the recently introduced Apple iPad, one thing is certain. This is but one in a long series of devices which will continue to be introduced to the market as part of a computing revolution. The advent of these technologies combined with demographic shifts and global ism will fundamentally change everything about our world.

Love it or hate it, the IPad is just one example of many more highly functional internet connected devices with more features delivered at lower and lower prices to come. These devices are highly mobile and will get smaller, becoming more imbeded into our daily lives.

The impact of products like iPad, combined with an increasingly available high speed Internet grid will eventually revolutionize each and every business model and organization existing today - and sooner than one might think.

When one reads analysis of the device, like Rueter's article " Publishers embrace iPad, but revolution unlikely", it shows how many continue to measure the success of an evolutionary product in terms of old paradigms. The device will not rescue a failing publishing industry, such is hope for the dying. It and its off spring to come, however, will lead the way to completely change how people produce, distribute and digest content; leaving the extant industry vanquished in its wake. Just look at the explosion of devices reflected in the graphic below.

The same is true for vast segments of the entertainment industry. When one reads that the iPad device underwhelmed Hollywood, people should laugh aloud. These devices were not designed to save the dinosaurs of that industry. However, they will be a part of redefining the entire method in which entertainment content is created, distributed and deployed as the demonstration below reflects.

Let's see the iPad for what it is. Not a savior but as part of a progression of innovations that will ultimately change everything.