Apple and NBC don’t understand the meaning of revolutionary
Since when has the term revolutionary become a cliche? In 2009, NBC tried to sell us the fact that Jay Leno was going to revolutionize prime time television. By the beginning of 2010, everyone knew the only thing Leno revolutionized was how to stab your successor in the back, something Entertainment Weekly dubbed the “biggest disaster in television history” . Wednesday, Apple’s Steve Jobs announced what many have called “a revolutionary product”. After much hype and anticipation the iPad was finally unveiled. Count me as a skeptic.
Like NBC’s claims about Leno, the claims about Apple’s iPad seems to fall well short of revolutionary.
Everyone was looking for the next cultural phenomenon from the wizard of Cupertino. Instead of the next big “game changer” like iTunes, the iPod or the iPhone, that would completely change the way be bought and consumed media, we were given a retread. When I first saw Jobs reveal the tablet I thought, “it looks like an over sized iPhone”. When he shared the inner workings of the machine my suspicions were confirmed. Honestly, I’d rather Apple had shown off the technology they used to enlarge an iPhone than what was displayed. At least that technology would make Rick Moranis proud.
If the lack of anything truly unique wasn’t bad enough, they decided to name the thing the iPad. The iPad? That sounds like something that my iPhone has to use once a month, not something that is suppose to save the publishing interest. When Jobs describe the device as ultra thin, I thought the next thing he was going to tell those in attendance was that it also “had wings”.
On top of that, in order to get books, internet, music and movies on the go, iPad owners will have to pay $30 a month for the privilege to access AT&T’s spotty 3G coverage.
I don’t think that’s what The Beatles had in mind when they sang
You say you want a revolution
Well, you know
We all want to change the world
Jay Leno didn’t revolutionize television and the iPad won’t revolutionize media.
Revolutionary things are the ones that happen organically. That are driven by passion and that change the way people act, think and interact. The Beatles were revolutionary. HDTV was revolutionary. Facebook and Twitter were revolutionary. TeamConan was empowering and revolutionary in the media space,
The term revolutionary shouldn’t be a buzz word and it shouldn’t be a cliche. It most certainly isn’t a retread late night host or a re-purposed piece of technology.