The PC world is buzzing lately about how laptop manufacturers are struggling to compete with Apple’s MacBook Air, which has exploded in popularity since the introduction of the third-generation model in 2010. This year’s fourth-gen update is proving to be the must-have laptop of the year. For every laptop manufacturer not named “Apple,” the race is on to make new super-thin and super-light laptops. Intel calls them Ultrabooks, and the name is catching on, despite being sort of silly.
People forget that Mac has a history of creating a novel product with problems and then working hard to fix the problems.
Apple knew what it wanted with the Macbook Air – a low priced, light computer with long battery life. To accomplish this it first threw out all sorts of legacy parts – such as disk drives – to lower weight. It used solid state hard drives not only because they were fast but also light.
But this made for an expensive computer and even though people loved the computer, it was not a major seller.
When HP was confronted by this problem with its Touchpad, it threw in the towel in a couple of months. Not Apple. Iy knew why it was making the laptop in the first place and had answered all the questions needed to sell 21st century products.
HP, Samsung and others really do not know why they are selling their products. They are simply doing whatever Apple does. So when their product does not magically do what Apple does, they bail. Dell did. Sony did. Samsung did. HP did.
Apple continued to refine its laptop, finally getting the computer it was trying for the first time. And now it is flying off the shelves and everyone is trying to catch up to the first version.
Without knowing why.
As Henry Ford said, “If I had asked people what they wanted, they would have said faster horses.” Others keep building faster horses. Apple builds an automobile.
By the time others have built their first automobile, Apple has built a Ferrari, for the same price.