The loss of a Steve Jobs keynote in 2009 and Apple's future withdrawals from Macworld Expos have stirred conflicting emotions in the Apple Fanboy crowd. Some herald it as the end of an era. Others shrug their shoulders. But the real question is: will Apple's presence or lack thereof truly make a difference?
Were we expecting big news in January? Apple already released new iPods and a new line of MacBooks. The iPhone Nano is a joke. Apple Netbooks are unlikely. So what did we have to look forward to? Updated Mac Minis, probably, and that's about it.
Many people believe Apple's Macworld fade-to-black has to do with Steve Jobs' health. This is ridiculous. Wired points out , "Do you really think Apple would cancel its attendance at all future Macworlds because Jobs isn't up to one speech?" I couldn't agree more. It's morbid to obsess over one celebrity's health and foolish to assume Apple will be irreparably damaged upon its CEO's eventual death.
It's also important to recognize of diminishing significance of tech trade shows such as Macworld, especially when it comes to Apple. Bunches have already shut down forever. And anyway, Apple holds its own shows, organized by and for the company, specifically for its own products. This allows Apple to produce at its own speed, without externally imposed deadlines. That kind of care and attention given to its products illustrates a characteristic of the company that has generated such a massive and loyal fan base to begin with.
Furthermore, Apple doesn't really need massive publicity anymore. Look outside the window in any major metropolitan area: not only will you be assaulted with billboards hocking Apple goods, but you'll see that seven out of ten people wearing headphones are rocking out with an iPod. Apple has managed to commandeer our attention and ingrain itself into our subconscious in a way perhaps no other company has. There is no escape; so what's one more expo?