The New York Times recently sat down with Steve Jobs biographer Walter Isaacson to briefly pick his brain about which products Jobs wanted to reinvent next and a whole lot more.
According to Isaacson, Jobs was keen on reinventing the television, textbooks, and photography.
“He really wanted to take these on,” Isaacson said. “I didn’t go into details about these products in the book because it was implicitly Apple’s creations and it’s not fair to the company to reveal these details. But, he did talk about the television. He told me he’d “licked it” and once said, ‘There’s no reason you should have all these complicated remote controls.'”
Rumors of Steve Jobs and Apple working to completely revamp the TV watching experience have been around for years now, but only lately has the signal to noise ratio increased to levels worth monitoring. And Jobs himself even cryptically alluded to an Apple HDTV set in his biography claiming that he “cracked” the problem of simplifying the interface.
‘I’d like to create an integrated television set that is completely easy to use,’ [Jobs] told me. ‘It would be seamlessly synced with all of your devices and with iCloud.’ No longer would users have to fiddle with complex remotes for DVD players and cable channels. ‘It will have the simplest user interface you could imagine. I finally cracked it.’”
Jobs’ biography briefly touches on Jobs desire to revolutionize the textbook industry by hiring the best of the best to create textbooks for the iPad.
But what we haven’t heard much about is Jobs’ interest in reinventing photography. Unfortunately, Isaacson son doesn’t delve into any specific details about what Jobs has in mind, but it is worth pointing out some previous reports which claim that Apple devoted an extensive amount of resources towards ensuring that the camera in the iPhone 4S was best in class.
One final thing – in the wake of Jobs’ passing there has been a lot of discussion regarding whether or not Apple can continue to flourish without Jobs at the helm. To this point, Isaacson explains why he feels that it can.
“Steve had the power of magical thinking,” Isaacson said. “It included being able to invent the future by “thinking different,” and he shared that with Jony Ive, who was a real partner and soulmate to Steve. Between Tim’s business sense and Jony’s design, I have no doubt that the company will continue to make amazing products.”
And of course, let’s not forget Apple is a company filled to the brim with talented executives and engineers. Jobs was essential in bringing Apple back to prominence, but one of his greatest feats was instilling a system within Apple whereby innovation can thrive no matter who’s in charge.