Apple’s arrogance, audacity, and alchemy as it challenges human evolution

“Through its sales and income, Apple has earned the right to disrupt many new markets. It has managed this with the desktop computer, with the smartphone, and now is doing the same with the connected world,” Ewan Spence writes for Forbes. “At each step it has infected something that is even more personal than the time before. Companies since the dawn of business have attempted to do this, but only a select few gain the trust, the position, and the authority to literally reshape the world. Apple’s final goal is to disrupt society.”

“Apple’s dominance permeates society,” Spence writes. “The iPhone is the biggest selling smartphone in the world, portable computing is dominated by the MacBook range, the iPad family is still one of the strongest tablet lines, and in the Apple Watch Cupertino is taking steps to build an even more personal relationship”

“What has Tim Cook achieved? Philosophically he has managed to place Apple at every major intersection of life. He has placed his physical agents of change exactly where they need to be,” Spence writes. “For what purpose? To make the world a better place, to use technology to create a better society; to redefine how the human race interacts with technology; and perhaps attempting to alter the course of human evolution.

Read more in the full article – recommended – here.

MacDailyNews Take: Clearly, Ewan gets it (even though he gives too much credit to Cook and not enough to Steve Jobs – after all, Steve was responsible for 3/4’s Ewan’s short list and for much more beyond that – or to Jony Ive, who is the “Steve Jobs” perfectionist of Apple, where design reigns supreme). This is not to slight Cook in any way, he was integral to everything post-Mac, just to give Jobs and Ive the proper credit. Without Jobs, Apple does not even exist and it was Jobs, even while being ravaged by cancer for years, and Ive who guided Apple to where it is today. Jony Ive is the most powerful person at Apple, as designed by Steve Jobs, not Tim Cook.

With iPhone, Apple changed the fabric of our everyday lives: All around the world today, you see people constantly pulling phones from pockets and staring at them. With Apple Watch, Apple will change behavior worldwide once again. A quick glance at your Watch and you’re off. No more smartphone zombies. Watch and see.MacDailyNews Take, January 30, 2015

Related articles:
Jony Ive is the most powerful person at Apple – December 12, 2014
It’s Sir Jonathan Ive’s Apple, Tim Cook just fronts it – September 18, 2013
Jony Ive hasn’t been given too much power at Apple – because he’s always had it – February 5, 2013
Steve Jobs left design chief Jonathan Ive ‘more operational power’ than anyone else at Apple – October 21, 2011


    1. AAPL is a key driver of Ray Kurzweil’s singularity theory, a confluence of technology, biology, and artificial intelligence.

      It is as if on a PLUM chart, AAPL is the JAM trajectory that drives the exponential acceleration of EGG (+-BUN).

  1. It’s really about team work, vision and planning.
    Team work involves all of Apple management and staff
    Vision comes from the likes of SJ and Ive
    Planning comes from Cook and setting up the company to be able to deliver high quality products in the millions.

  2. You’d think that with all Apple has accomplished so far it would deserve to have a slightly higher P/E than Cisco Systems who basically churns out the same internet routers year after year. Apple provides a lot of work for component suppliers and assembly factories besides its own retail outlets. It’s been said a number of times how Apple floats all boats and you don’t hear things like that being said very often.

    Apple seems to be set on driving a watch app industry pretty soon. Apple will certainly have the tightest integration between smartwatch and smartphone considering it designs its own SoCs and tailors its own OS to suit whatever is required. I wouldn’t even try to predict the future but If any company can make smartwatches a mainstream product, it will certainly be Apple.

  3. Not a very good article. It’s hero worship of a company and its CEO, a puff piece filled with flattery.

    The author is trying to be profound, and it doesn’t work very well. That’s why it opens with the tease that the author has seen something important.

    At a fundamental level, Apple sells change? No, but it reads well.

    Has Tim Cook placed Apple “philosophically” at every major intersection of life. No, and that assertion has numerous problems. For starters, where is the philosophy he mentions?

    Rarely a good idea to invoke “alchemy” in an article, unless it’s about alchemy. Over the top there, but magic fans and Harry Potter lovers love the idea.

    Bad grammar, too. He used “alchemists” when he should have used “alchemist’s” or “alchemists’ ” there. Maybe he was subconsciously revealing his misunderstanding of alchemy.

    Tim Cook has “earned the right to change society itself?” Hilarious.

    This is what passes for insight? It’s hagiography.

    And it’s a crying shame Steve Jobs has been all-but-forgotten by the author. No sense of history.

    1. I kind of agree with you for different reasons.

      1. The writing seemed a bit “self-important” if you catch my drift. The author seems a bit full of himself. He could have just said, “Apple has done a bunch of stuff that people really like, find amazingly useful and become very big and powerful in the process.”
      2. Not sure why the word “arrogance” was in the title.

      And yes, I”m an absolute Applenut since 1985.

  4. I like these types of questions: “What gives Apple the right to change the world?”

    I like these one even better: “Who doesn’t have the right to change the world?”

    It’s really easy to change the world. You can be part of the civilized free world or you can be part of the herd bereft of morality.

    You can do nothing and simply watch the world change.

    Now here is a statement that can be perceived as arrogant:
    “Philosophically he has managed to place Apple at every major intersection of life.”

    Counter this with the internet a quick search.
    14 per cent of British adults have never used the internet. (2013)
    20 Percent of American Adults Don’t Have Internet (2013)

    I’d be willing to bet and put these percentages up against adults who have seen clouds. Yes I’m willing to be that there are more adults across the world that have seen clouds than those who have used the internet.

    It’s Gaia that is at every major intersection of life, but you never hear the advertisements for it, or the chest thumping.

    That would be arrogant.

    Now a humility check, heck that would be a major philosophical shift. Tim Cook I find is pretty humble, jouranalists and analysts on the other hand, drop humility like a hot potato.

      1. I’ll restate the point:

        This statement that can be perceived as arrogant:
        “Philosophically he [Tim Cook] has managed to place Apple at every major intersection of life.”

        There is nowhere in the article that states exactly what this philosophy is, though one can dangerously assume that it refers to some Apple’s mission statements, such as the power to be your best.

        Now placing Apple at every major intersection of life is a big statement. I’ll take a grain of salt and say that it’s not life he’s talking about, rather it’s human life. That’s a major restriction right off the bat. Then I whittle it down even more, saying that there are a good percentage of people on the planet that have never used the internet, and probably even less that have used an Apple product. One of the main senses used in this situation is sight and I propose that there are more people that have seen clouds than those who have used Apple products.

        You bring even more cannon fodder with your comment about the natives in the Amazon basin that kill their prey with blow darts. That relates to feeding, one of the major intersections of life. Now I can imagine that people could use the Apple phone to obtain food somehow, either by searching the internet, or using Apple Pay to purchase the product, one could use Apple products for their job, and that indirectly supports life but far and large Apple does not have much direct interaction with feeding, even less when non humanoids are involved.

        Therein lies the arrogance of the statement. Apple simply have not placed itself at every major intersections of all life, even less of human life. Feeding is one example. It’s true that 99% of the people on earth have never got their food the way that the natives of the Amazon basin do but then again the natives of the Amazon basin don’t go on thumping their chest about their blow darts being at every major intersection of life. That would be arrogant.

        I hope that makes the point clear.

        1. Nice discussion of the relativity of arrogance.

          I didn’t read the article because I felt its premise was preposterous. But I did read your comments on it though. And accepted your arguments.

          In much the same way, I read literary and movie criticism and celebrity gossip: intelligent reactions are often far more telling than the original sources. And it saves a great deal of time in the bargain, not having to wade through drivel, — instead being TOLD it is drivel, and thank you very much.

          Am I naïve, am I foregoing independent thought, by trusting secondary sources?.. Do I have a “right to an opinion” if I just listen to you, instead of reading the original article?

          1. I blush at your post, thank you so much. You do realize that I have conjectured the idea that you are married and that would refrain me from asking you out on a date, unless of course you are married to a woman, then that would be a different story. At either rate your compliments might cause me to develop an ego.

            I do the same thing myself taking note of critics and what not with a grain of salt. I am obviously biased and I don’t always get it right but in this case, well you know what tech jouranalists are like.

            You have the right to your opinion of course, and that believe it or not “right” is one of my fun words. In terms of “rights” the definition is “a moral or legal entitlement to have or obtain something or to act in a certain way.”

            There are a lot of talk about rights, and again the talk does not always follow the walk. Nearly all rights, being dependent on morality or legality are flexible, transient and more or a guideline. Now an inalienable right to me would transcend the limits of morality and legality. In other words it could not be removed as most other rights can be. The right to see, hear, an education and so on, express oneself can be removed depending on the circumstances. For me the one inalienable right is the right to die. No one can remove that from me, it can be delayed or precipitated but one way or the other it’s my inalienable right to die.

            Makes me realize to enjoy life.

            So enjoy life as you can Glendalough, that’s a process.

            1. Once again you have touched me with your words, as easily as if nearby at a cocktail party exchanging glances, whilst the other guests’ laughter and the clink of champagne glasses faded from awareness.


            2. What? I am clueless about why, though I think I read a while back someone giving you a hard time about posting here.

              That’s atrocious. I feel so very sad. Oh well, you will be carried in my heart.

              Live long and proper. You have brightened up my time here.

              Sorry this is making me distraught.

  5. Apple disrupts markets because of its vision, long term plan, innovative design, and preeminent supplier/assembler network and contracts.

    The sales and income are results of those Apple characteristics, not the source of Apple’s prowess. In addition, Apple did not need to “earn” any rights to disrupt markets. Apple simply decided that it was necessary to do so for the evolution of the Apple ecosystem and the benefit of its customers. Apple achieved disruption despite the resistance of industry and the negativity of the media/pundits/analysts (although this is gradually improving).

    What Apple has earned (from those with the knowledge, wit, and ability to admit it) is respect along with the confidence that, although not every aspect will be perfect, Apple is heading in a positive direction.

  6. On MDN’s comment about design reigning supreme, I couldn’t agree more. I love how Apple will invent brand new breakthrough technology in hardware and software just to meet a design requirement. This is exactly what makes Apple appeal to so many of us, and then we are never let down when we get it home and start using it, because the hardware and software are designed as perfectly as the products are beautiful, and the entire experience is perfectionistic.

  7. Don’t forget the hundreds of other designers, engineers, and creative people at Apple. The three people mentioned above gave them . . . the power to be their best!

  8. Proof that Apple knows what the customer wants before they do.. Apple says smaller is better….world says no we want bigger…IPhone 6 & 6+…Apple releases Apple Watch now everyone will be reading their social media,emails & messages on a 1″ screen…hmmmmm

    1. With the iPhone 6 Plus, they tricked us into missing the small screen 😉

      Actually, the convenience of having a quick glance at the wrist rather than carefully handling your iPhone will be amazing, not to mention the fact that so many of us no longer even consider it rude to bury our face into our phones and that will slowly reverse once again.

Reader Feedback

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.