Apple October 2013 event (Tim Cook, Apple logo 001)

Following Apple’s earnings release yesterday, Tim Cook expectedly teased new products on a conference call with Wall Street analysts and investors. Hints of new gadgets were also dropped in Apple’s media release announcing the earnings.

“We’re eagerly looking forward to introducing more new products and services that only Apple could bring to market,” Cook was quoted as saying in Apple’s press release.

And now responding to pressure from analysts who demand new-category devices, Cook sat down with The Wall Street Journal on Thursday to reflect on Apple’s development process, touch on such subjects as mobile payments and explain why Apple isn’t rushing out new stuff to market just to please investors…

In the interview, Cook admits that it will take new blockbuster products to revert the notion that the company is declining, quipping that “Maybe it will take some new products.”

Here’s your money quote:

You want to take the time to get it right. Our objective has never been to be first. It’s to be the best. To do things really well, it takes time. You can see a lot of products that have been brought to market where the thinking isn’t really deep and, as a consequence, these things don’t do very well.

We don’t do very many things so we spend a lot of time on every detail and that part of Apple isn’t changing. It’s the way we’ve operated for years and it’s the way we still operate. I feel great about what we’ve got coming. Really great and it’s closer than it’s ever been.

As for mobile payments, this is what Cook had to say:

I think it’s a really interesting area. We have almost 800 million iTunes accounts and the majority of those have credit cards behind them. We already have people using Touch ID to buy things across our store, so it’s an area of interest to us.

And it’s an area where nobody has figured it out yet. I realize that there are some companies playing in it, but you still have a wallet in your back pocket and I do too which probably means it hasn’t been figured out just yet.

Discussing Apple’s earnings yesterday with the NBC, Cook reiterated that the firm’s “laser focus” separates it from the competition.

“I think some companies decided that they could do everything,” he said, alluding to Samsung’s strategy of throwing enough mud at the wall to see if some of it will stick. “We know we can only do great things a few times, only on a few products.”

“We are not ready yet to pull the string on the curtain but we have got some great things that we are working on that I am very, very proud of and I am very, very excited about,” he also said in a question-and-answer session with Wall Street analysts following the earnings release.

And yes, Apple is embarked on entering some new categories.

iWatch concept (All, Todd Hamilton 001)

“We currently feel comfortable in expanding the number of things we are working on,” he said. “So we have been doing that in the background.”

“When you care about every detail and getting it right, it takes longer to do that,” said the CEO. “That has always been the case. That is not something that just occurred.”

If you ask me, Cook thus far has mentioned phrases like “laser focused” and “exciting new stuff in the pipeline” too many times to be dismissed automatically as PR talk.

Naysayers be damned, Apple is of course working on new stuff as we speak.

“There is no shortage of work going in on that nor any shortage of ideas,” he said.

This process is taking time and the company will delight us with exciting new innovation when its management feels that products in development are up to Apple’s high standards, not when crazypants analysts in their wet dreams think they should be ready.

Fair enough?

  • Rushing doesn’t mean doing better. The iPad is the best example.
    But Apple is taking this to seriously. The lack of NFC, bigger screen and other techs are not good for them, and they know it. That presentation that leaked, e.g.

    • FrankensteinBlack

      Totally agree. Ignoring the wallstreet wolves is understandable but being slow to react to the changing consumer landscape is just bad. (i.e. “they want what we don’t have” – bigger screens on the high end and a cheap model on the low end).

      Tim is a good leader but Steve was better equipped to drive tectonic shifts faster. Why? Because you have to be a bit of an a hole to make it happen that way. Just sayin…

      • Steve was also an idea man. Tim’s a logistics guy. Since that’s the case I can definitely see Apple moving towards mobile payments because it really is a refinement of the supply chain which is right up Tim’s alley.

    • Quang

      why does Apple need NFC while it already has iBeacon and AirDrop?
      Just look back at mobile Flash. Public kept asking for flash on iPhone…and now mobile flash is dead…

      • NFC is essential for any plans to create a mobile payment system.

      • Quang

        I don’t think so. I don’t think we MUST have NFC to create a payment system. There are many many many other ways to create an effective mobile payment system, probably much much better than NFC.

      • DIesel

        you said ‘many’ 3 times but didn’t mention any alternative

      • Quang

        Didn’t I mention it already? lol
        Apple has the answer for NFC with iBeacon.
        Retail stores are now dropping NFC cause NFC is expensive to upgrade.
        I mean we can have a great mobile payment system without NFC. NFC is not essential or a requirement to have a mobile payment system.
        Use NFC to charge your phone huh? that’s not a great way cause you have to place it on the charger pad. Charging your phone this way is useless when you want to use your phone while charging cause NFC won’t charge your phone when you pick it up.

    • N&LH

      I does not mean when Apple did not introduce NFC in the iPhone, means it is not good for them. Apple introduced iBeacon in IOS 7, which is better than NFC. Apple is not an Android company when one of them introduce a feature then after a month or 2, you see the same feature in all Android devices. Apple introduces new feature only when they can see a huge benefit from the technology and they can do something further with it. In other words, they mainly put usefel features not useless features into their devices

  • Alex

    WOW those watches look great!

    • They’re one of those fantasy mockups some designer dreamed up. If Apple rolled something like that out and it had an actual viable battery life it would be leap forward on par with the original iPhone.

    • Jeffrey

      it’s a pretty old concept, and apple will never ever do something like this. also, it’s fugly

  • FrankensteinBlack

    Tim the turtle, “slow and steady” regardless of the wallstreet wolves barking…

    • Tom

      Who cares about them?

  • @dongiuj

    “And it’s an area where nobody has figured it out yet.”
    Yeah, that’s why MILLIONS of people are using it very successfully in japan for the past 7 years or so. That’s right, “nobody has figured it out yet”.

    • Y4VIN

      ‘MERICA

      • @dongiuj

        What does that mean?

  • amazingrugs

    In a strange way I think the fact they have waited so long to go with a bigger screen on the iPhone will actually benefit them more than if they had gone larger earlier. It will feel like more of a change, and press will be huge for it. Its something people have been wanting for years now.

    Right now phone tech is in a weird spot where there are only marginal increases in screen quality/size/cpu performance each year, so anything that can make your phone feel like a more sweeping change will benefit them.

  • John Tremendol

    I m just sitting here, getting hyped reading interviews

  • Chindavon

    A tale of two games.

  • Tommy Gumbs

    They are moving at a pace to slow to react and they know this. They also know that in any industry, you must innovate or you will die. All they need to look at is Apples own history for a true lesson on why.

    As for Cook and his statements. They are B.S. Look at the 5c for example. I am not saying it was/is a bad phone, but they got it completely wrong. Not only was the product wrong, but so was the beginning marketing. Apple is comfortable at the moment….because of the major success from its current product line, they have had a little bit more time to formulate a plan and respond…..but even they must know that their time is becoming extremely limited.

  • Thiago Vaccaro

    This isn’t a excuse at all. I agree to the part where he said that Apple has always been a turtle-speed for products release… But there’s a diference between Steve Jobs Apple and Tim Cook Apple. With Steve Jobs, Apple released products that REALLY innovate, and then they had time enough to think in other ideas and to develop the next device, so the competitors could at least try to get next to them. Now, Apple doesn’t innovate as they used to with Steve Jobs, they only renovate. So, Tim Cook, you better rush it out, because the market is getting tired of waiting one year for a “updated” device, we want NEW ideas, NEW products in the market.

  • Dante Arellano

    Cooks sucks jonny for CEO hi is the man than needs apple.

    • Framboogle

      You are an idiot. Steve Jobs knew what he was doing when he picked Cook, and insulting Cook is indirectly insulting Jobs’ decisions as well.

      • @dongiuj

        Oh no….

  • mav3rick

    In other words: we still are mulling the really innovative iPhone, selling it for at least 3 times the manufacture cost which brings in over 50% of our profit. Why do something else?

  • Your Mother

    BS

    the real reason their not RELEASING new products is because they have none. that plus the fact that they are busy running to the patent office in an effort to dilute what’s already on the market. most recent example is apple getting a patent for pattern unlock !!