Apple held a somewhat rare, company-wide virtual meeting with Steve Jobs this morning (11am Pacific Time), wherein Steve Jobs discussed the gravity of the iPhone on Apple's business as well as how he perceives the parts played by the rest of the company. The following is a series of notes produced by combining details from several of Ars Technica's internal sources.
Steve opened up with how he believes that the iPhone will change the mobile space forever. He said that when the Mac first came out, people talked about how some day, every computer would work that way, and the same would be true of the iPhone. The iPhone was driven by the fact that everyone hates their phones, and it's all about "core competence"--making all of the features easy-to-use and self-discoverable.
He then talked about iPhone in relation to the rest of Apple's business. Steve described it as trying to put the third leg onto a chair with only two legs. The first leg is the Mac business, which Steve addressed by saying that they have the "best Macs" in the new product pipeline ever right now, and that the stuff coming out in the next year is "off the charts." Wow, sounds juicy.
He said that the second leg is the iPod and iTunes marketplace, which we all know has been wildly successful. The third leg of the chair, Steve hopes, will be the iPhone business, which he hopes to grow into something as strong as the iPod. He added that he hopes for the fourth leg to become the Apple TV, but focus is on the iPhone for now. This reiterates previous reports that Steve Jobs viewed the Apple TV as more of an experiment than a total dive into the set-top space.
He then expanded upon OS X, and what it means for the business. There is one OS group that does Mac OS X for the Mac and the iPhone, as well as "some iPods we're working on." Could it be that the next major revision to the iPod video will, in fact, be a widescreen iPod similar to that of the iPhone? We're not sure, but it definitely sounds like Steve is leaning in that direction.
Someone from the audience asked whether Apple was concerned about cannibalization of business from the iPod with the introduction of the iPhone, and Steve answered that if there's going to be cannibalization of Apple, they want it to be by Apple. He also answered a question about "why EDGE?", saying that EDGE is more pervasive than 3G networks and that 3G chips are also power hogs.
Here's a funny one. "Why 6 PM?" Steve says Apple didn't want people to have to take off from work, so they figured that was a good time to do it.
Our tipster said that at this point, Steve got a "look on his face that was kind of the same look as he had when introducing the Mac in 1984." He said that it sounded like Steve thought the iPhone launch was a really huge deal, and considered it to be one of the most revolutionary and exciting products they had ever created. Steve said, "Don't worry about two years from now," they'll deal with that as it comes. Apple employees will be able to tell their grandkids that they were at Apple when they launched the iPhone, and that it was all worth the sacrifice.
To thank the employees, all fulltime Apple employees in the US who have been there for a year will be getting an iPhone at the end of July. Multiple sources have told me that they believe this includes retail employees.
Source:→ Ars TechnicaApple, Steve Jobs, Stevenote, iPhone, iPod, Mac OS X