Phil Libin: "The new stuff from Apple is amazingly innovative"
Things are looking dreary for Apple, which currently appears to be incapable of pleasing Wall Street's and the media's expectations, even as it continues to lead the smartphone industry.
The new iPhones, like seemingly every other smartphone announced in the last few years, are boring. The iPhone 5c isn't cheap enough. The iPhone 5s is a modest upgrade to a year-old smartphone featuring a better camera, a faster processor, and a fingerprint scanner. Many industry observers met the announcements with a yawn.
Evernote CEO Phil Libin isn't one of them. Speaking at a PandoMonthly event in San Francisco, Libin explained why the seemingly boring technologies introduced with the iPhone 5s are actually a Big Deal.
"I think the new stuff from Apple right now is amazingly innovative," Libin said. "I think iOS 7 and the new iPhones they've announced are as big a jump forward as everything they've announced in the past."
The fingerprint scanner that promises to allow iPhone owners to unlock their devices and purchase songs, movies, books, and apps? Much more than a slightly impressive way to unlock a phone.
"I think [Apple] just won the identity fight," Libin said. "The fingerprint scanner is going to make the Web feel safer. It's going to make it be safer, and no one has managed to make this work in the last 15 years."
The M7 coprocessor, which promises to improve the iPhone's motion-sensing capabilities without draining the battery? More than a glorified accelerometer. "Having that chip in there is going to force standardization and push the entire [fitness tech] industry into the mainstream," Libin said.
The shift from a 32-bit to a 64-bit architecture? More than a complicated, largely irrelevant change understood only by the most tech-obsessed geeks. The architecture will allow companies like Evernote to do much more on the device than they are, Libin said, enabling many tasks which currently rely on "the cloud" to occur on-device.
"I'm amazed that people look at the [iPhone] 5s and think that it's only slightly different," Libin said. So far as Apple's ability to innovate goes: "I was concerned, like everyone else, I think. At this point, in the last couple of days, I am reassured."
[Photo by Yelena Sophia for PandoDaily]