Apple's strategic focus going forwards?
While over on DVXuser (I'm a HPX500 & AF-100 owner) I decided to jump over to the FCP forum to see what was being said there. In seems it's not nearly as vigorous a debate as here, but in one thread called "What Apple's approach towards Final Cut and its legacy users means for its future.", Barry Green made the following post. I hope he doesn't mind me cross-posting it here, because I thought it was a very reasoned and insightful view of Apple's strategic plans for the future. And it does not include professional editors....
If you look at Apple as a whole, it all makes a lot more sense. This has been telegraphed for years.
The idea that Apple somehow "needs" the image or aura of FCP and the NLE industry is, I think, not consistent with who Apple is and what Apple wants to be. Apple is not a computer company. They changed their name; their name used to be "Apple Computer, Inc." and they ditched "Computer" out of it. Apple's name is "Apple, Inc."
Apple does not identify themselves with the computer. Apple has declared that they are a "Mobile Products Company". Apple is about the "i" line. iPhone, iPod, iMac, iLife, iWork, iTunes, iPad. That is where the focus is. That's where their profits come from. That's where their growth is, that's where their future is.
To say that today's Apple needs, or even cares about, the top-end tiny-niche professional video market, is about equivalent to saying that Sony needs and cares about the BetaSP user. Sure, that's the girlfriend they had that that got them to the big dance, but now that they're at the big dance, they've traded in Camilla for Diana. (yes, I know Charles did the opposite... but face it, Apple has a new trophy wife. )
Like I said, this has been telegraphed for years and years. The switch to Intel was the first major shift -- it removed Apple from the image of being a proprietary, innovating computer manufacturer, and changed their focus to software. A Mac is just a Windows box now, but running Mac OS instead of Windows. The dumbing down of the Mac Pro was the next major shift, and the castration of the MacBook Pro was the completion of it.
Apple will very clearly tell you exactly who they are, and what direction they're going in. All you have to do is listen. FCP X is not a "mistake" or a misstep, it's a thoroughly calculated, intentional, purposely-thought-out product introduction. It does exactly what they wanted it to do. They are proud of it. They think it's jaw-dropping, and they have trumpeted it everywhere. It is *exactly* what they wanted it to be. It isn't a mistake, it isn't a "half-baked 1.0 release", it is what they wanted to make. For who they wanted to make it for. This was a complete, from-the-ground-up re-invention of what they think editing is and what it should be, and it is made for who they believe their customer is. Steve Jobs says it is "awesome". They mean it.
And it clearly, very clearly, signals exactly what direction Apple is headed in, regarding the future of the high-end pro video industry.
If you don't like that direction, you simply must get off the train right now. They have told you where they're going. If that's not where you want to go, get off the train. It doesn't matter if you really love the luxurious seats on the train, or if you have great memories of prior trips on that train, or even if you've already bought your tickets. If the train is going the opposite direction you want to go, don't get on the train.
I have no doubt that once the dust settles, they will sell millions and millions of copies of this FCP X (even if it is "iMovie Pro"). In fact, that's probably exactly what they intended -- they intended it to be iMovie Pro. For the mobile products company. For producing video through the iCloud, and distributed through iTunes, and viewed on iPads and iPhones. That's who Apple is, and that's the future they embrace.
If that's not what you do, then it is time to look at Avid and Premiere and EDIUS and Vegas and whatever else is out there.
On the other hand, if that is what you anticipate doing, I bet FCP X will do that job quite nicely.
The rest of the thread: http://www.dvxuser.com/V6/showthread.php?253563-What-Apple-s-approach-towar....
I'd be interested in other's comments on this topic. Not the "X doesn't do this or that", but whether you feel Apple intends to actively innovate for the professionals in the marketplace.
Myself, I'm afraid I must agree with Barry. Shake, Color, Server as other prime examples.
"Constituo, ergo sum"
Bob Woodhead / Atlanta
Very nice succinct piece.
I like this quote "If you don't like that direction, you simply must get off the train right now."
I just got off the train, and even got a refund on my ticket! I decided to get on a Lear jet. Its probably the last software I ever thought I would use . As an editor for 30 years Ive used CMX, Avid MC, Avid DS and FCP. Never would I have thought I would be using and experiencing such speed and power from Adobe CS5 Premiere Pro. I have always relied upon the well crafted Photoshop and After Effects, but it took a total rebuild for me to make the leap to Premiere Pro. Its almost like I never left FCP 7, with the bonus of the wonder of dynamic linking between PP and AE. I couldnt be happier.
Avid DS / FCP / After Effects Editor
Well I'll add one thing, Apple hates bad PR, and they are getting it in spades. When Conan O'Brien mocks FCPX, something that a small subset uses - it just looks bad, and they notice it.
A couple years back Apple released a new version of iMovie that changed the design in a bad way, and after the bitching about that, Apple went and did their best to fix the mistakes and release another better version. They are not so locked in any path that they are completely deaf - they do hear the bitching.
The people complaining loudly here are the ones that will make FCPX better - if we all just drank the kool-aid and smiled you non-complainers would get no improvements.
So thank a complainer - they are doing all you non-complainers a huge favor!
This video posted at Adobe is rather winning, sincere and well timed. What is says to me is that Adobe respects their customers and wants to communicate clearly with them. The transparency PR model has its advantages when money (and long term planning) is on the line. Spin is tired. Transparency is in.
Watch Adobe's Vision for Professional Video
[Bob Woodhead] "If you don't like that direction, you simply must get off the train right now. They have told you where they're going. If that's not where you want to go, get off the train. It doesn't matter if you really love the luxurious seats on the train, or if you have great memories of prior trips on that train, or even if you've already bought your tickets. If the train is going the opposite direction you want to go, don't get on the train."
Very well said.
Even before reading this I had decided to move on. I am no longer bitter and I don't want any explanations from apple(Not that they are giving any!). This piece just reinforced my beliefs.
What Apple is doing is good for them and what i am gonna do, is good for me!
2.66 GHz 8-core, ATI Radeon HD 4870,
FCS 3, AJA Kona Lhi
"The creative person wants to be a know-it-all. He wants to know about all kinds of things: ancient history, nineteenth-century mathematics, current manufacturing techniques, flower arranging, and hog futures. Because he never knows when these ideas might come together to form a new idea. It may happen six minutes later or six months, or six years down the road. But he has faith that it will happen." -- Carl Ally
Sort of off topic, but this:
the castration of the MacBook Pro was the completion of it.
I have a 2010 i7 15 and it's screaming fast. I'm comping in 4.5k and grading in decent fps at full rez on fw800.
Sure the ports leave much to be desired. But did they kill the Macbook Pro? Or is the Macbook Pro some kind of voodoo taboo horrid machine to work on? The one that I've been doing all this great work on within the last year...
I'll use the google, I haven't kept up on it's future, but what am I missing here?
Apple in changing it's name just didn't want to limit itself to Computers. To say it's just a mobile company would defeat the purpose of their name change. Look at Sony they do a lot of everything, actutally a little too much of everything if you ask me but thats how a lot of Japan companies work. Still Apple makes a ton selling computers and is actually growing when the industry as a whole is going down and that's not counting iPads either.