Apple’s Reinvention Of The Instruction Manual


After watching the Apple keynote recently, I noticed a couple of interesting topics that were overlooked by the overwhelming desire of many for the new iPhone 6S, the iPad Pro and the reinvigorated Apple TV.

Microsoft and Adobe both appeared on stage, this would never of seen this under Steve Jobs. If anyone missed it, they came to present how their products could be used on the iPad Pro. With Microsoft this highlights the continuing shift of its strategy, Office has always been its bread and butter and with so many businesses and users being ingrained to use these products their appearance nods towards it refocusing as a software business – increasingly pushing its acquisition of Nokia into the background.

Overlooked by many was the introduction of the Apple pencil. Again, something that would not have happened under Job’s regime. For many it’s an interesting flirt once more with skeurmorphisim, Apple could have called it a stylus, but no this product adopted the name of the most basic of writing implements. With the introduction of 3D Touch and the feedback that offers it could be said that Apple is trying to reinvent the pencil.

This got me thinking; what if other companies sold, presented and reinvented products in the same way that Apple does? For example, would HP printers be reinventing a child’s colouring book, with the feature that prints off colouring paper. Does its e-print feature reinvent post? If everyone had an e-print email address, then the need for envelopes through the door would be eradicated as anyone who wants to send you printed documents could just email your printer. The problem is, does anyone else apart from HP printer owners know this detail? And, of those that do, how many use these features?

When the iPad originally came out, everyone knew how to use it, the UX was the same as the iPhone and any differences were shown in the keynote or adverts. It was the same for the Watch too.

Perhaps one of the key reason’s behind Apple’s success is not just building highly desirable products but the combination of its keynotes, adverts, store experience and finally the reinvention of its instruction manual via these channels.



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