Credit: Mike Deerkoski/Flickr

Should Apple believe its own hype?

The tech giant has claimed its apps are more important than the industrial revolution.

by Jack Torrance
Last Updated: 22 Jun 2015

Apple's Worldwide Developer Conference (WWDC) keynote speech last night was all about incremental change rather than revolutionary new ideas. Most of the plans it announced are already available from its competitors - like integrating public transport into its maps app, something Google has been doing for years. Even its much-touted new streaming service, Apple Music, seems like a reheated Spotify with a couple of extra features.

It seems that's not killed off Apple's penchant for hyperbole though. 'If you think the Industrial Revolution was transformational, the app store is even bigger,' it sensationally claimed in a video.

The app store has certainly changed the world.  Even those who don't use Apple products have felt the power of apps – from takeaway owners who have a new channel to flog their wares to taxi drivers whose livelihoods are under threat from Uber. But the industrial revolution laid the foundation of the modern world and global economy as we know it – including the app store itself of course. MT would certainly rather live without Instagram than on a subsistence farm.

Read more: Apple's Tim Cook, martyr or visionary?

Some of the small changes Apple has made are admittedly important. Iphone users in the UK will be able to pay for some public transport and in some shops with their phone from next month – a step towards a world where we don't need to carry wallets. Making its virtual assistant programme Siri more powerful could pave the way for much more intuitive artificial intelligence.

Apple clearly believes its own hype but, while pride comes before a fall, it's only fair to admit that Steve Jobs and Tim Cook after him have built a seriously successful company and a particularly strong brand.

Total historic iPhone sales by volume hit 700 million in March and will probably surpass 1 billion within a few years, and that's no mean feat Not many companies can goad thousands of people into queuing overnight just to buy their products a bit earlier than everyone else. Its astronomic market cap ($736bn - or £481bn) may seem over-inflated, but while Apple's brand remains strong it has a licence to print money.

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