Apple’s incredible run of game-changing, huge-selling products will end soon, the founder of Electronic Arts (EA) forecasts, signalling the expiry of Apple’s post-2007 golden period.
According to a new analysts’ report, the iPhone 5 is set to shift a frankly staggering 30 million units in its first-quarter of release alone. However, if the founder of EA Trip Hawkins is to believed, the handset might be the Cupertino tech giant’s glorious last hurrah - simply because it’s asking too much for the company to continue to innovate in the same way and go on improving its devices.
Hawkins told gaming Bible Edge magazine: “The thing is, it may take another year or two before Apple starts to decline, but it has to — everything does.
“Everything revolves so much around Steve, and no matter how good his lieutenants are, they’re not Steve. None of us is going to live forever, though I hope he lives for a really long time.”
Hawkins added: “They invented this tablet thing that’s going to be really big. They’ve done really well by reinventing the phone. They breathed new life in the Mac.
“They’ve got this super-high marketing. All these things are about as good as they can ever be — how much better can they get?”
So what to make of this? Well, it’s undeniable that the EA man’s comments are lent a veneer of credibility on the grounds that he was previously on the payroll at Cupertino, before leaving to found EA. And the fact that WP7 is snapping at its heels in the smartphone space, while Android has overtaken the iPhone for market share, means that there is a case to be made that the iPhone's status as the leading smartie is already crumbling.
However, we can't see see Apple's halo slipping any time soon. With iPads reportedly outselling other tablets by a margin of 24 to 1 and Mac sales booming, talk of Apple declining in any meaningful way is wide of the mark to say the least. Give it four or five years, though, and who knows...