Do Consumers Really Care About Wow?
I am fascinated by the amount of media and bloggers who said that what Apple introduced in the iPhone was incremental and did not have the “wow” factor”. They complained because they wanted support for NFC (not even close to being ready for prime time) and dissed it for its new connector, as if it would cause great harm to their lives.
Grow up people! From 30+ years of following Apple I have learned that when Apple designs a product, everything they do is related to how “they” want to use the products themselves. Every edge designed into the product and every component is done for a reason. They don’t listen to the media or rumor sites that say they want this or that feature. Instead, they create products they would love to use.
I remember talking to Steve Jobs about this on a couple of occasions and he made it clear to me that Apple is about creating great products and writing world class software and the motivation was always based on how he and the team would like the product and how they would use it. They don’t do focus groups. They don’t do consumer research and instead, they create products they would love and believe that in the end, consumers will love them too. Never once did he say to me “Apple is shooting for the wow factor.”
They also have to live with the laws of physics. Although I believe the iPhone is the most elegantly designed to date, everything they did to enhance it, whether it is to the case itself and all components inside, literally pushed the law of physics to the edge of what can be done. At the same time, they made sure it was recognizable as an iPhone. Keep in mind, Apple has spent the last 6 years branding its look and feel and to create a new design that maybe looked like a banana, wallet or any other form factor did not make sense.
Thankfully, consumers see past the drivel that comes from some media and bloggers who write about what “they” wanted Apple to do or why “they” are disappointed in Apple. In fact, Apple seems to get this right every time they introduce the new iPhone.
The major reason for this is that Apple does not develop products for the media and bloggers. That is a good thing. If they did, iPhones would have 30 i/o ports and look like a can of spray paint. And they seem to hit the right nerves with each new model.
While media and bloggers are complaining about the lack of wow, consumers who seem smarter then many of these writers, just go out and buy Apple products in huge numbers. Apple is the most profitable company in America and they did not get this way from listening to the media and bloggers.
But they did get to be this profitable by adhering to their core beliefs that is ingrained into the Apple DNA. They create products they themselves would like to buy and use and believe that consumers will buy them too.