Unless you’ve been living in a cave for the past few decades (or simply in complete denial), you can’t avoid the impact that Apple has had on the computer and technology market. The bigger question isn’t what technical features each new product might offer or when Apple will update their current product line. Instead, the most important and critical question is how will Apple’s latest technology impact your life far beyond the technical specifications?
That’s what Top Bananas is all about. We follow Apple (and other technology leading companies) and report not just on the latest news, but why that news should matter to you no matter what field you may be in. We’re not Apple fanboys blindly supporting anything Apple does. We’re supporters of great technology that improves the lives of everyone around them. Can you think of any other company that strives to not only satisfy their customers, but also change their lives for the better?
While there are plenty of other companies making positive impacts on the present and reshaping the future, Apple is one of the leading proponents of progress in technology, industrial design, environmental impact, social equality, worker rights, retail experience, and customer satisfaction. Apple products aren’t just a laundry list of technical specifications. Apple products are purposely designed to change the world for the better in their own small way.
For example, in the early days, the Apple II defined the design of personal computers by offering expansion slots so users could expand the capabilities of their computer over time. The Macintosh introduced the mouse as a pointing device and a graphical user interface that made desktop publishing possible on a personal computer combined with a laser printer.
HyperCard introduced the concept of links that influenced the design of the World Wide Web along with the idea of rapid application development (RAD) later adopted by Microsoft’s Visual Basic.
The original Macintosh also defined the idea of an all-in-one computer. The iMac later took this concept further with a translucent plastic case in different colors that helped break the idea that computers had to appear in boring, beige plastic boxes.
The Newton heralded the idea of a personal digital assistant (PDA) later made popular by Palm Computing with their Palm Pilots. Buried inside the Newton was another Apple influenced technology known as ARM processors, which were specifically designed for low power usage. ARM processors were later adopted by all the major smartphone manufacturers. If you use an iPhone, iPad, or most Android devices, you’re using an ARM processor that can trace its lineage way back to Apple’s influence.
The iPod and iTunes revolutionized the music industry by eliminating the medium of music purchases (vinyl records, tape cassettes, and compact discs) by replacing them with digital audio files that you could buy and download over the Internet. The iPod let you store thousands of songs in a device no bigger than a cigarette pack so you could listen to your music wherever you went through the convenience of ear buds.
The iPhone changed the entire telecommunications industry with its touch screen interface, App Store, and miniature computer that essentially took the power of a desktop computer and put it in your pocket. While Steve Ballmer, then Microsoft’s CEO laughed at the iPhone, the iPhone later went on to dominate the entire smartphone industry, wiping out previous leaders like Nokia and Blackberry, and spawning an entire industry of copycat clones running Android. To further cement the short-sightedness of Steve Ballmer, the iPhone would later go on to earn more money than all of Microsoft’s products combined including Windows and Microsoft Office.
As part of the iPhone’s design, Apple needed a strong glass screen that could withstand the daily pressures of a mobile phone. That’s why Apple helped make Corning’s Gorilla Glass popular, which is now used in rival smartphones and tablets. If you use a rival smartphone or tablet with Gorilla Glass, you have Apple to thank for being a leader in recognizing and adopting a technology that had been previously languishing in the research labs of Corning.
The iPad took the concept of mobile computing further by wiping out the cheap, cramped, and underpowered netbook market and replacing it with a far more capable touch screen tablet that could be used for all types of interactions for paying with a credit card to ordering food at a restaurant. The iPad redefined the tablet market as much as the iPhone redefined the mobile phone market.
Further Apple innovations include Touch ID, a fingerprint scanner that made biometrics an everyday consumer product. Siri was the first commercially available voice recognition assistant that originally appeared in the iPhone 4S. Apple Pay provides a secure way to make credit card payments without releasing your actual credit card numbers. Combined with Touch ID, Apple Pay has already influenced mobile payments through smartphones.
The Apple Watch promises to redefine the wearable computing market with its Digital Crown and Force Touch user interface design. Combined with the voice-activated interface of Siri, the Apple Watch redefines computer user interfaces away from keyboards and mice, and towards fingertips and voice commands.
ResearchKit, an open source framework for retrieving medical data, promises to revolutionize medical research. One day, your life might be saved by the data ResearchKit helped collect.
Unlike other technology companies that outsourced manufacturing to cheap labor markets in Asia and completely ignored worker conditions, Apple has made progress in protecting worker rights with fair pay and safe working conditions. Apple is also a leader in developing products that are highly recyclable without using hazardous chemicals in the manufacturing process.
As you can tell, Apple products aren’t just technical specifications wrapped up in slick marketing. Instead, Apple products strive to be game-changers in every aspect from their impact on the environment to their ability to provide new capabilities to users that were previously difficult or impossible to achieve before.
You ask us why we follow Apple products so closely? It’s because Apple strives to change the world for the better. How can you not like a company like that?
That’s why Top Bananas won’t just be another Apple news site. Instead, it will provide thoughtful analysis on the impact of Apple on areas outside of mere processor benchmarks or technical features crammed into a device with little thought for how it affects the user’s experience. If you want to know how Apple might change your world, you want to follow the trends and Top Bananas will be there to guide you along the way.
Remember at Top Bananas, it’s not just news. It’s analysis.