Everybody’s talking about Apple’s huge pile of cash these days, and they are all supposing as to what Apple should do with it. It’s a business world governed by strict laws of profit and money, so there are minimal chances that Apple will take some non-business paths and decide to invest its money in something else than its own success and well-being. Thanks to its millions of fans, Apple has become a giant company that enriches life every day in lots of wonderful ways.
Apple of Today
But Apple is not only cashing massive amounts of revenue, it is also giving back to the community. Growlers will be happy to know that Apple is involved in a lot of charitable and society oriented enterprises and designed to innovate and better the present. Apple doesn’t usually boast about its humanitarian endeavors but in an interview dated back to February, CEO Tim Cook offered a rare glimpse at the charitable donations made by Apple. According to Cook, the company donated more than $50 million to Stanford University Hospitals plus another $50 million to African aid organization RED. As of last year, Cook instituted a matching program and announced that employees will be match with charitable donations up to $10,000.
Caring About Education and Environment
Apple also supports the future of education and the implementation of new, modern and appealing ways of engaging students into their studies. Therefore, back in September 2011, Apple sent more than 9,000 iPads to teachers in 38 states as part of their innovative project “Teach to America”. The purpose of this program is basically to encourage young graduates to teach in the most remote or impoverished school in America. As a consequence, most children living in disadvantaged areas are often left behind and ill-prepared to live in the demanding digital world of today.
Lately, the company has taken a very keen interest in the environment as well. Back in 2010, Apple was building a very impressive data center close nearby Maiden, North Carolina, which turned out to be a “solar array”. Fuel-cell facilities with similar properties were later added to the project. The centers, that are still very much in progress aim to preserve energy efficiency. The solar array is said to cover 100 acres and shall produce 20 megawatts or 42 million kilowatt-hours annually. The project has been nicknamed “Dolphin”.
Apple of Tomorrow
But what would happen if, somehow, Apple would decide to totally change its overview of business plans and plan a total shift in its paradigm of doing things? Say, make a chain of universities that would train future Apple engineers or designers where Jonathan Ive could be the leading voice. You’ve probably guessed by now that this article is going to be a mix of reality and vision, so take it with a bit of salt.
It sounds crazy, but by no means impossible. We already have ongoing works for the new campus, so why would it be impossible for them to start building the very first Apple university? Obviously, that would require a lot of investment but if Apple would gradually invest a part of its money, each year, for educational purposes, things would be different. At least, boost the development of educational apps and have talks with the government to ease the deployment of such technologies in education.
I can only imagine how awesome interactive lessons about history and biology would be. Imagine kids with tablets in their hands, dividing cells by tapping or learning about Napoleon’s wars by playing a mini-strategy game… What would stop Apple from creating their own university and establish those standards in their own educational facilities? Obviously, not all the talks with governments will succeed, so why not create an awesome university where you will be allowed to deploy your own strategies? How much could that cost?
I will go even further and say that it would be an awesome idea if those students will have the chance not to work only for Apple, but to choose their own path in life. That wouldn’t be too fair, but isn’t that the purpose of a university? To educate and to teach things? An ideal placement for Apple universities would be to have some in USA, Asia and Europe. Asia is always a nursery of great talents, as we know that the majority of technological products and breakthroughs have their roots there. The same goes for Europe, only on a smaller scale.
There are only rumors about iBank going full scale, but Apple could really rock the world with such a service. Obviously, it would start a war with banking services, but when you have so much money like Apple does, nothing is impossible to you. I know many of you will consider this piece childish, a waste of time but I think we must dare to imagine the future, s knowledge is the past, as Einstein would say. And because Apple knows how to invest and manage its finances, it is also willing to help customers in this department, as well.
Since its release, the iBank app has become the new standard in Mac money management. The program features a very intuitive interface and a full set of money management feats. Thanks to it you can easily access and edit your transactions, download your online account data, reconcile the statements and track your investments. But can you dare and think beyound that?
A recent study has shown that Apple users would accept to use Apple’s banking services and if we take into consideration that there should be almost 300 million iTunes account, it makes sense, right? You’re probably thinking that banking with Apple would be just too much, but I think that would be a bold move.
iPhones, iPads are great, there is no doubt about it. Especially, the iPad, which has started to being used in medicine, architecture, education and many other fields of the human life. That is awesome and what we can do is only praise Apple for bringing up the iPhone and the iPad, movements that have basically set standards for the smartphone and tablet markets. Khan Academy app for the iPad is a good example of how awesome the iPad can be deployed and used in education. But why does Apple stop there?
Why don’t they go even further and help developing technologies that would literally reduce famine, overcome many diseases and contribute to scientific breakthroughs? I am talking about medical gadgets, too. Look at Bill Gates. He only realized what good he’s done to the society only when he managed to save childrens in Africa and Asia. He managed to convince a lot of rich people, including Warren Buffet and Mark Zuckerberg to donate most of their money to charity reasons.
Why can’t Apple be the single company in the world that would actually have a Research & Development sector that would be interested in developing these technologies? Would that be too costly? I think not and I am not a dreamer when I say this. If governments aren’t doing anything about this or too little, maybe it’s time for world’s richest company to jump in.
Venus Project, a New World
Some voices suggest that you’d need $20 billion to make the water clean on Earth by using LifeSaver bottles. Apple could really make a change in the world by doing that. Or, even better, look at the incredible Venus Project, which has been promoted in the third part of the Zeitgeist documentary – Moving Forward and developed by Jacques Fresco. That guy is definitely a genius and he’s made up an extraordinary project that could reshape our society. Why can’t Apple be the Superhero and start developing and deploying those technologies into reality? Are they really profit-oriented? Fresco doesn’t have the money to make Venus Project a reality, but Apple can!
Modern society has access to highly advanced technology and can make available food, clothing, housing and medical care; update our educational system; and develop a limitless supply of renewable, non-contaminating energy. By supplying an efficiently designed economy, everyone can enjoy a very high standard of living with all of the amenities of a high technological society. A resource-based economy would utilize existing resources from the land and sea, physical equipment, industrial plants, etc. to enhance the lives of the total population. In an economy based on resources rather than money, we could easily produce all of the necessities of life and provide a high standard of living for all.
I really suggest you to read this to find out how awesome Venus Project really is. Apple could invest in a small town or a chain of towns and make their economy resource-based. That does sound crazy but imagine what the results could look like? Soon enough, Apple could become the first company in the world with a market capitalization of $1, 000 billion. How much money will they have then? Before reaching that specific moment, Apple can easily enhance its supply chain so that they would have priority ahead of their rivals, so that they could decrease the time spent from the moment when the product is finalized and reaches the customer. But what comes after that? What more does Apple need?
Siri And Artifficial Intelligence
Maybe the biggest achievement in Apple’s recent breakthroughs has been the development of Siri. We’re not saying the technology is perfect and could come out a winner in the Turning test. Not just yet. But the implications behind it are huge. What if Apple could achieve more greatness in the artificial intelligence field? Think about it. The most immediate improvements we could expect to be added to Siri would be the broadening of the databases she works it.
Flight databases, book databases, you name it! How about making Siri the expert on everything Apple, for example? While in the app store you could ask her “What people think of this app” or “How do you install a certain feat”. Could Siri advance even higher up the scale of intelligence? It certainly looks possible. Envision the scenario of Ian M.Banks’s book “The Culture” that describes an utopist world where computers called “Minds” – computers that possess immense artificial intelligence work without requiring any human input at all.
I am eager to find out how will Siri look like in iPhone 5 or the new iPhone, you name it. I am sure that there will not be major breakthroughs, but, in a few years, you will be surprised to see what Siri will do. It could very well bring artificial intelligence in our palms, when and where we need it.
Android seems to be the operating system that is loved by other devices besides smartphones and tablets, maybe because it is based on Linux. But, ask yourselves, won’t we get bored with smartphones, tablets, laptops, iMacs and all that? I am sure that there will arrive a moment when we’ll want different technologies to be used in our daily lives.
What will Apple do? Can you imagine a future where in half of US homes there will also be an Apple iRobot? I am not going to suggest that Apple could build cars, because, well … that’s already too much for them. However, I dare to say that I envision a future where Apple would invest in spaceships, in shuttles and so on. Maybe they’ll even open an Apple Store on Moon, who knows?
However, it would be a real pity if Apple will not decide to act different and change its paradigm. Starting a war with Android is not only futile, but non-sense because Android is the easy solution for the majority of smarphone/tablet manufacturers out there. And, as Epson showed it, Android can be used for glasses, as well. Let’s hope that Google’s own glasses will be just as great. Think about robots. Without any doubt, they will be the next big thing, be it in 50, 100 or 200 years. I am absolutely sure that Apple will live to see those times. The incredible rumor frenzy around its products will not cool even in 20 years from this moment.
Next iPhones And iPads
iPhones have become trading goods and many people will soon invest in Apple, thus enhancing the link between the company and the customers. So, what will be the future like for Apple? iPad 10, iPhone 50? Or, they will always have the iPad and the iPhone and in every year they will release another update. That seems to be right, since the 2012 version if the iPad is called the new iPad. If the next iPhone will be called the new iPhone, then chances are that Apple have started to change its way of viewing things, at least with regards to their latest shiny stars.
Nobody can really estimate how much money and profit the next iPhone will bring in, but if we see at how much expectation there is in the air (people are still waiting for the iPhone 5 and didn’t give their money for iPhone 4S), we can be sure that it will be stunning. What will Apple do with that cash?
Apple – The Future Supercompany?
To summarize, Apple has proved to be a complex and resourceful company over the years that has managed to innovate through creativity, products, its business model and their focus on a unique customer experience. Apple has managed to build an enterprise that stimulates bold and enterprising new ideas, thus launching successful and profitable new innovations. Apple’s advantage relies in its diverse ecosystem of employees, customer base, suppliers, partners and stream of global networks, but also the growing culture that has been created around the brand.
What do you think Apple should to become the Superhero Company? Do you think they should invest more in education, medicine and to start fighting poverty or you like them just as they are? Let us know in the comments section and let’s see if we can build a visionary Apple together.