Apple has reinvented itself radically many times and done so when things were still going well. This is part of the companies success story. And the CEO Tim Cook apparently plans to continue with this strategy. Major reinventions where:
- Moving from the Apple II to Macintosh
- Dropping System 9 and replacing it by the totally new OS X
- Shifting the priority from computers to the i-pod
- Moving from i-pod to i-phone and i-pad
There were more, but these transformations could all be explained by early anticipation of an end or major shrink of the existing business. For example i-pods were nice music players, but then each phone contained a music player and every person had a phone in the pocket anyway, so the usefulness of an i-pod was tending to zero. Apple fans are very loyal, so they kept buying apple products, even when they were becoming obsolete, but that can only work for a short time. So they made a i-phone, which was theoretically a phone, but the phone-functionally did not really work. I assume, with more recent iphones they have fixed this.
But Tim Cook is moving on. What are the strengths of Apple? Design, marketing and sales. Especially including the fans in working for free for the company to enhance sales. This is an essential part of the success story. We are already used to the fact, that useful features are radically removed, like the DVD player in laptops, when DVDs were still important. Or the standard earphone plug from phones. Apple fans feel flattered by this, because they are so advanced by losing something first that later on actually becomes obsolete.
So the next step is coming now: Apple will move on to fashion. They will design clothes, shoes and jewelry. Then they can concentrate on their real strengths, reinvent themselves once more and remain in business for another long future. Computers, tablets and phones will be phased out.