My niece is nineteen years old. When she was sixteen, she would come home from school, take out her laptop, plop down on the couch, lift the computer lid, turn on the TV, plug in her iPod earbuds, and set her BlackBerry down next to her. From afar, it looked like she was running NORAD. But fast-forward a mere three years, and now she comes home from school, takes out her iPad… and that’s it.
Whereas I come home form work, setup my laptop on my desk, grab two iPad and my iPhone and plop down on the couch — but the thing is I only really need one of those devices. And the argument that Joel is making isn’t that the iPad rules the roost, it’s that we can only look at one device at a time (duh).
More importantly Joel notes:
All of that core content is now readily available on one screen. From content (in text, images, audio, and video) to communications (chatting with friends on Skype or via Google Hangouts), it’s all there on this one device that rules them all.
Everything that we used to need multiple devices to do, can largely be done on just one device. There are certainly things I can’t do on iOS, or OS X, but more often there are just things that I prefer to do on a particular device. Force me to choose, and well, it doesn’t really matter what device I choose.
This is why the App Store is such a profitable space, because the more you make the decision of choosing between devices irrelevant (via filling needs with apps), the more power you are giving to users. That translates into users willing to pay to get that “power”.