When Apple’s Reach Exceeds Its Grasp

I hate to pick nits in an otherwise insightful article, but I think Jason Snell overemphasizes the importance of Apple’s “size” in this piece.

When the iPhone first shipped, developers immediately began clamoring for a system that would allow them to write programs for it. Apple had no doubt been planning for such a system from the earliest days of iPhone development. But the company didn’t unveil it until March 2008.

I don’t think being bigger, whether in terms of employee head count or in terms of cash on hand, could have made the iPhone SDK appear significantly sooner. Most companies that are bigger than Apple tend to move slower, not faster. I don’t think the lesson to be learned from July 11 is that Apple needs to get bigger, but rather that they need to ease off slightly on the accelerator.

Although when you do compare employee head counts between Microsoft (91,000) and Apple (21,000), it’s essential to note that at least half of Apple’s employees work in its retail stores. (And, also — who am I kidding? — I love to pick nits in otherwise insightful articles.)

Wednesday, 13 August 2008