Six great Apple failures

Apple Online Store“Time for a change of pace while we all reflect on Apple’s introduction of a US-only 6-month trial of 99-cent TV show rentals from Disney and ABC alongside new model iPod touch and glimmerings at the Apple TV tomorrow,” Jonny Evans writes for Computerworld. “Here, just for my many Apple-hating readers, taken from the annals of Apple’s great history are six products or events some say the company should never have been part of.”

Evans’ six great Apple failures:

• The Hockey Puck Mouse
• The G4 Cube
• iPod Hi-Fi
• FireWire
• Apple Pippin
• Steve Jobs’ irreplaceability

Full article, with Evans’ reasoning behind each of his choices, here.

MacDailyNews Take: The Hockey Puck Mouse certainly was a design failure. We’ll go along with the iPod Hi-Fi and Pippin, too. But, FireWire is “a failure” that “the company should never have been part of?” Puleeze. And, the G4 Cube likely helped Apple learn important design lessons that were later put to use in a variety of very successful products, including the Mac mini, MacBook Air, iPods, and iOS devices. We don’t consider the G4 Cube as a “failure” in anything but unit sales (and this was mainly due to its price). The machine worked as advertised and, because of its stunning design, it also turned a lot of eyeballs Apple’s way at a time when not so many were looking at Apple at all. And nobody is irreplaceable. When Jobs is no longer Apple CEO, things will change, but that doesn’t mean that Apple won’t be able continue to lead the tech world (especially since most of the tech world seems rabidly intent on copying whatever Apple does). It certainly helps ease our minds that Apple now has extremely competent people like Tim Cook in place and ready to go.

77 Comments

  1. What an idiot! FireWire a failure? This guy has obviously never done anything with a computer other than word processing and downloading porn. And the cube a failure? That was an awesome design, in its convection cooled beauty!

  2. I agree with MDN take. The hockey puck mouse was a failure because to broke a cardinal rule of industrial design, it put form over function. In a way, the new magic mouse is similar for a lot of people, I just find the thing to low in my big hand to be of any use.

  3. Firewire a failure? Sure, it lost to USB in the marketshare war, but it not only tremendously useful, but still viable in a small segment. Still better than USB, too. A superior technology that is still relevant today.

    I didn’t mind the round mouse. It wasn’t great, but I had no problems with it. However, I know most people hated it.

  4. Nobody is irreplaceable that is true, however there are those whose intrinsic value to a company is immeasurable. Steve Jobs is such a person. If it weren’t for him, a site like MDN would not be possible since there probably would not be an Apple to discuss any more. Apple fanboys would be relegated to the irrelevance of “remember when.” I fear the day when Steve Jobs is no longer CEO as we’ve seen what the world looks like without him and it wasn’t pretty.

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