Talking tech since 2003

Tim Cook just stepped off the stage at D11, the conference put on by Walt Mossberg and Kara Swisher, the two founders of AllThingsD, and he had a lot to say.  Starting with the question of whether Apple is in trouble as competitors start to catch up and continue to grow.  Obviously, Tim’s response was “Absolutely not,” he went on to tell everyone that Apple has sold 85 million iPhones and 42 million iPads this year alone.  One interesting stat he provided is that Apple products account for 59 percent of web usage.

Something Tim kept honing in on during the conversation is the need for Apple to focus on products — “We’re a product company and we think about products,” he said.  Tim also noted that Apple has a lot of great ideas and is continuing to innovate all the time, which includes new product categories.  This led into the question of Apple’s interest in TV.  It’s clear that Apple is in fact working on some kind of better TV experience based on the lack of information Tim provides in his answers.  We also learned that Apple has sold more than 13 million Apple TVs, with 6.5 million of those sales coming this year.

The only other thing we got from that part of the interview is that there is in fact a grand vision for TV.  “When you look at the TV experience, it’s not an experience that I think many people love. It’s not an experience that’s been brought up to this decade,” he said, but refused to elaborate any further, “I don’t want to go any further on this — I don’t want to give anyone any ideas that they don’t have.”

We also learned that Apple has a great deal of interest in wearable computers, “I think wearables is incredibly interesting. It could be a profound area,” said Mr. Cook.  He went on to talk about how he thinks the wearable computing space will be a big deal, but didn’t officially commit Apple to taking part in developing gadgets for it.  However, if you read between lines, it seems clear that Apple is testing wearable technology right now — and it doesn’t seem like it’ll be glasses.

“I wear glasses because I have to. I don’t know a lot of people who wear them because they don’t have to,” said Mr. Cook, who went on to say, “from a mainstream point of view, I think glasses are risky.”  This is something I eluded to in a previous post, where I also questioned whether women will wear smart watches.  It’s clear that Tim and Apple have thought this through a bit as well, “To convince people they have to wear something, it has to be incredible,” he said.

Tim also acknowledged that the future of iOS and OS X will be announced at this years WWDC, which takes place starting on June 10.

In terms of the possibility for multiple iPhone product lines, Tim didn’t shut down the idea of that being a possibility one day, however his responses did make it seem as if it’s not happening just yet.  Cook made a point to explain how the iPod product line expanded over time to include the Nano, the Touch, and the Shuffle, and how those additions to the iPod product line offer different functionality and feature-sets than the iPod Classic.

The current iPod product line appeals to all different people who have different needs, Cook noted, and went to ask the question, “Are we now at a point that we need to do that?”  And again, it appears (based on his responses) that he doesn’t believe that to be the case at this moment.

What are your thoughts on what Tim Cook had to say at D11?  Leave a comment!

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