Apple loses its title as the best smartphone maker with the best camera quality. It has always been at the heart of people to buy the iPhone when all they desire is the camera quality until when the table was turned over the last 18 months. Samsung, Huawei, and Google have started making great smartphones with equal camera quality or even the one that surpasses the apple.
Google has been producing nice phones with not only good camera quality but also in performance and software that collects data from users to help them achieve tasks easily which apple said hardware is required e.g Portrait mode.
The inability or unwillingness of apple to collect a large amount of data from it users actually seems to be one of the problems driving its failure in software innovation. Google uses the data it collected to identify objects, map the world in real time, makes it camera faster and smarter, make reservations for users with artificial intelligence, making screen calls e.t.c and only these things can make you have good interactions with your smartphone.
Apple is scared of data, Google and Amazon have proven in the digital assistant and voice computing space, the more things you know about your users, the better you can actually serve them. Apple, on the other hand, wants to keep you inside its tools, safe from the potential dangers of data misuse or abuse certainly, but also marooned on a narrow island, sanitized and distanced from the riches that data can provide when used appropriately.
Being the second in terms of best camera on smartphones alone might not be a big problem, but Apple has also had significant issues with its hardware and not just with quality control, but in design space as well (who could have predicted that in 2018 people would be touting Microsoft as the industry leader in design?). Siri continues to be a running joke among most people I know tech gurus and average users alike. Apple’s iCloud efforts have amounted to little more than a “hard disk in the sky” (a famous Jobsian turn of phrase).
And is it the best experience for consumers to be forced into Apple Mail, Apple Maps, iTunes, Apple Music, and Apple Photos at every turn? Can you honestly say they’re the best at what they do? No one is questioning if Apple is making money — it is.
But all of this second-best positioning makes me wonder: Is Apple still the company that leads the way, or is it just getting better at locking in users to its own increasingly subpar experiences?
Being the best intermediary for things as simple as turning on your lights with your voice, getting the right driving directions, ambiently listening to music, organizing your photos and videos without thinking about it, learning new things frictionlessly, screening your calls, or scheduling your time may seem minor, but those activities add up to something much more meaningful for many people. Amazon and Google are getting much smarter about defining how we live with technology.
In the long run, innovation can’t be constrained to cleaner lines on a handset or improved processor speeds. In a very ironic way, the kind of “feeds and speeds” innovation Steve Jobs mocked on stage in 2011 has become the way Apple defines its biggest improvements in technology.
So yes, Apple’s camera may be very good. It may be the best camera Apple’s ever put in a phone. But it’s not the absolute best anymore — and that can’t be a comfortable place for the company to be.
Credit: The outline