Originally Posted by dustinb
Apple has really been on a war against Adobe, which doesn't make sense to me at all. The market that supported Apple when they were really down in the 90's was the professional graphic sectors, and they were all using Adobe products. Most graphic firms still use Apple with the Adobe suite, so this is a real bread & butter market for them. Their first move that angered Adobe was to release Lightroom, and to now put a hate on Flash is just moronic.
It seems Apple's consumer success with iPod, iPhone, etc, has really caused them to lose focus on an important part of their clientele.
Sorry, but this is far less than accurate. Adobe starting a move away from Mac toward the Windows platform a long time ago. Code for the CS suite of products began to favor Windows the moment Adobe announced the move to Intel, which is odd because that is a hardware platform they were already very familiar with. The issue worsened a great deal when Adobe actively chose not to pursue 64bit support on OSX in tandem with Windows. The research and integration work with Apple for this support, started long before the support surfaced for Microsoft's platform, and the reason is partly history.
So Macromedia bought and refined this incredible product for deploying motion graphics, called Flash. Many of you are very familiar with it in it's recent iterations, but it was fairly obscure at one point. This was a point where Microsoft's media formats were failing to get traction, and QuickTime was the video/motion format to beat. Real was doing well with video alone, however did not have the type of embedded support QuickTime was seeing, and Apple managed to do it on Windows. So, Microsoft and Macromedia aligned to basically try to kill off QT. The trade was, Macromedia's Flash player product would be built with the help of MS engineers to have the best possible performance and compatibility on Windows, and any future versions for Apple's OS (and other platforms) would be ports to allow full functionality and nothing more. In return, MS would bundle Flash player with IE 4 and with Windows retail. THIS alone is the reason that Flash grew to the insanely high installed base that it eventually reached.
The product continued to be refined for Windows, and simply released for others. Flash has ALWAYS been a resource hog, and poor performer on Mac. This was deliberate.
As Adobe looked to strengthen it's position with the crowned King of the market-share in both business and personal PCs (not to mention the majority in internet browsers), Macromedia came in to view. They already had the market for browser-based animation captured, and were making year over year increases on the web development side with Dreamweaver. It was cheaper for Adobe to look at Macromedia as an acquisition, than it was to try to beat them in both segments... and it carried the bonus of a stronger alliance with Microsoft.
So, Adobe and MS being pals and all... we've seen this extend straight through to where we are today; Apple trying to make their platform more independent from a software vendor and competitor that has been forced to play both sides of the fence with them for over a decade already. Apple has picked it's battles and won once or twice. In this case, I think instead of trying to battle it out, they are using what they do best (marketing) to make sure the battle doesn't even occur. It's still business motivation. But I assure you, that although Apple is making the headlines currently for firing shots at Adobe and being rigid about improvements to try to make things work... there is a lot of history here, and it's not just as cut and dry to say "Jobs and Apple are just tyrants".
Now, the users. Yes, every user that's not in love with the iPad is going to continue to say "why not this and why not that". Apple builds personal lifestyle appliances and electronics. They also build computers. The iPad is the first, and does not want to be, or pretend to be the second. Several things happen when they do, number one of which is they can't really be the "best" and charge what they need to.
Explanation: By being the very best experience at the few things and essentially developing a sort of new category, they can make yet another run at doing what they did with the original iPod. If they wanted to be a full-blown tablet, they could make it incredible... but it would cost over $2000 putting them out of reach for the people they felt like they were targeting; casual users. It would have horrible battery life, and would never be able to really run a standard OS and remain a touch-based platform. It's a loss any way you slice it, because in the end, if it does "everything" it will cost more than every competitor (based on the Apple retail business model) and would not differentiate itself from the market in any way other than being aluminum. How much would that be worth?
It may not continue to be a success forever, but it's not likely to be a sudden failure either. It's outpaced every prediction of sales, moving over 1 million units already. Although you can find review sites panning it for not being the everything tablet, you aren't seeing a lot of complaining, belly-aching owners about how they were screwed. So it's already a success, and the one to beat. I for one hope that another company succeeds a beating them, because it will force Apple to really step up their game beyond incremental updates. Watch the next-gen iPhone unfold for proof positive of the effect of a good competitor (Android).
Apple has weathered this storm before. The iPod was beat into the ground day 1 for what it did not do. Now, their brand is a pop culture trend that generically labels portable music players, and is nearly as famous as the format it rallied around (MP3). And like it or hate it, they've done it again with the iPhone. Will the iPad sell everyone? No, no way. Neither did the iPod Touch or the iPhone. For 5 months we all read about how the iPhone didn't have this or that... but it hasn't failed.
The iPad is and will be a success with the people Apple targeted for sales. the rest of the gadget population will buy what they feel is a superior offering, and hopefully we'll all see success in the continued evolution of productions.
Sorry about the novel... Large Red Bull.