As a card carrying, bona fide Apple watcher, I’ve been following the Apple vs. Samsung saga. In short, Apple sued Samsung because they copied Apple’s designs.
Samsung said, “No, it ain’t so, Joe” but any dead frog with a speech impediment and a seeing-eye dog could tell you what everyone already knows. Samsung copied Apple. Why? Samsung copies everybody. That’s how they keep their research and development costs low.
The trial las been an interesting one because it has revealed very detailed inner workings about the gadget world’s most secretive company. That would be Apple. Trials tend to do that and Apple has been required to testify about how the company does what it does.
For example, one of the more notorious secrets came from Apple senior VP Phil Schiller. The revelation? Apple thought about making a camera. And a car.
Another not quite so secret secret came from Apple senior VP Eddy Cue who told Steve Jobs that Apple should develop a 7-inch iPad. To think that all Apple management and staff walk the Steve Jobs line is not to understand humanity. Or, how Apple works.
Another item came to light in the trial regarding the original iPhone project, specifically the interface. Employees were told they would have to give up nights and weekends for a few years on Project Purple.
Who came up with the idea to double-tap on an iPhone screen to zoom into web pages? Scott Forstall. If you’re an Apple watcher like me then that little revelation did nothing to keep you awake at night.
These are the kinds of things that pass as secrets from an organization known for internal and external secrets.
How many iPhone prototypes did Apple develop? Too many to count but one of them had eight sides, another was completely curved and rounded, another mimicked the iPod mini, and another was tall and skinny with an ogee-style metallic back.
Yes, I had to look up what ogee meant, too.
Testimony in the trial also brought to light information about Apple’s development process. Think family style. Sitting around a kitchen table. Elsewhere in the secret trove, how many iPhone users buy cases? 78-percent.
How does Apple know which features to add to a product? Customer surveys? Nope. Never. Apple decides internally. How much money did Apple spend promoting the iPhone the first year vs. the iPad the first year? $97-million vs. $149-million.
And Apple sold many millions more iPads than iPhones in the first year.
One iPad prototype looked remarkably like the old white MacBooks of yesteryear. Yet another had a kickstand that resembles one on a motorcycle. Or, a stylus stabbed into the back of the iPad.
CNN Money calls them incredible Apple secrets? Incredible? I think not. Interesting, perhaps, but certainly not incredible. Apple may win this case against blatant and slavish copier Samsung, but the company loses a little of its soul by having to divulge so much detail about inner workings.