For many many years Apple has long been considered the underdog, the good guys, the rebels trying to survive against the tyranny of a Microsoft dominated world. So last night I was watching the recording of the keynote speech given by Apple CEO/founder Steve Jobs. He was greeted by thunderous applause and a standing ovation like some great political leader. Much of Steve’s talk was about the new iPhone 4 to be released by the end of June. And his style in many ways was like a cheerleader hyping up the spirits of a growing diehard followers of Apple. And the followers in the audience (some 5,000 strong) applauded at each new feature and demo he was showing.
But then Steve got to something called iAds. And the applause sort of was missing. At first you think promoting a way of getting advertisement on you cell phone is a bad thing. And then Steve does a wonderful job of telling all those work at home developers trying to make a living that if you allow a small unobtrusive advertisement to be tagged unto your application you’ll get paid 60% of the advertisement revenue. This was met by complete silence. I think the audience like me was unsure whether this was good or bad. But there is something very unique about iAds that unlike anything else brings the point home to each of us that the very things that we might detest and complain about might actually be the very thing we want. And so about 5,000 minds in that audience sort of went into brain freeze thinking “hmmm??”
Let me put it this way. Up until now professional TV ads or even internet ads have been considered an undesired “evil” or nuisance to pay for the programming your view or browse. And all this pays money to only the big corporations. Now each of us as individuals could watch videos to learn how to write an App for the iPhone, write an App and have the Apple Store take care of the marketing and sales of your App. And then the final piece is that you can sign up to have an advertisement from a big corporation placed on your App. The Apple corporation does the big boy negotiations with these big companies and you get 60% of the revenue. Now the small person gets access to the kind of business meant for large media companies.
Now the good guys get to become part of the bad guys? Or maybe the bad guys were really the good guys? But now maybe you can stop complaining about advertisements because maybe more than you know you’re making a living off of them?
It reminds me of the Star Wars Attack of the Clones movie where the ultimate good guy Yoda leads a massive army of clones to bring bring balance back to the side of the good. And then at the end you start to realize that maybe this was a trick and the move for good creates the new empire and the good guys (the clones) become the bad guys (imperial storm troopers) of the future.