The interview was a lengthy one, and a lot of things were said. I thought I’d do a rundown of what Steve had to say. A lot of questions were answered.
Note:This is a long post, I put some of the most important parts in a comment below the post.
Steve had a lot to say about the iPad. For example, did you know the idea of a tablet came before the idea for the iPhone? Steve wanted a multitouch display that people could type on. After playing with it for a while, it became apparent that it would be perfect for a phone.
Another thing that came up was whether or not tablet computing would ever replace laptops or desktop computers. Steve paused before offering the following metaphor. He thinks that in the near future laptops will be like trucks. Only people who need the additional utility will have them. As for the other people, cars (or in this case iPads/tablets) are good enough.
Of course, the 4G iPhone leak came up. It was asked if Steve thought they went too far with it. Steve revealed that the iPhone prototype may have been stolen, that the person who sold it to Gizmodo tried to cover their tracks, and that Gizmodo knew that they were buying stolen hardware. There’s not much more to it than that.
Also, the rumors that Google would be replaced by Bing as the default search engine were dismissed. Steve said there were no plans to remove Google from the iPhone.
As for the iPhone platform and app store, there was a lot to say there. Flash was obviously discussed. Steve said that they didn’t put Flash on the iPhone because Adobe didn’t have a suitable way of doing it. There still isn’t a suitable way of doing it. He doesn’t mind the lack of Flash because it’s being phased out. Much like physical media, the floppy disk, and serial ports.
He also commented on the app store approval process. He stated 95% of apps are approved within a week. The approval process is needed to protect consumers. For example, what if an app secretly took all your gps information down, or your passwords? An approval process is necessary. He also pointed out that they support html 5 on the iPad/iPhone. This means that a developer could still make web based applications, something that has been forgotten since the introduction of the app store.
Also brought up were iAds, Apple’s solution to the lousy ads on the iPhone. Steve says that people want to stay in their apps, not taken out by ads. Since there wasn’t a good ad solution, they had to step up and make one, that’s all there was to it. They didn’t want to compete with anyone, they just wanted a better experience for the iPhone/iPad, and they had to do that themselves.
So what about a Verizon iPhone? Steve was asked about the possibility of having the iPhone on two carriers in the US. He stated that there might be an advantage to this. Not exactly confirmation of a Verizon iPhone, but at least he didn’t dismiss it.
There has been a growing concern over the suicides at Foxconn. Steve says they’re looking into it. While the average rate is below the US’s suicide rate, they’re still troublesome, and they’re looking to getting to the bottom of it. He states that it’s no sweatshop, just a factory… a factory with a food court and movie theater. It seems to me that a lot of the problem is that the workers see that they could get more money for their family by ending their lives. Although, I’m sure their families would agree with me when I say that the life of their loved one is more important to them. Seeing as Apple uses Foxconn’s factory, they’re working on improving the situation, and even the pay of the workers.
Steve commented on set top boxes as well. He pointed out that consumers are getting dvrs for free from their service providers, so they’re not looking for another set top box. Someone would have to really change the game for set top boxes, and that hasn’t happened yet. Yet would be the key word here. Let’s not forget that Apple may be working on a new TV.
Apple in general
Steve claims he has the best job in the world. He gets to come in every day, work with great people, and make innovations in a huge sandbox. Who could disagree with him? That sounds like a great job. He stated that they don’t have committees, they just get together and work on ideas together. This is how they keep moving forward. In fact, they’re moving forward so fast, they’ve even surpassed Microsoft in market value.
And there you have it, that sums up some of the most important points in tonights discussion. Next up, WWDC!