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Is Apple Losing Its “Cool” Cachet With The Popular Kids?

SMH’s Steve Colquhoun notes that while Apple has again been rated as the world’s top brand this week, a leading social researcher warns the company and its products are losing touch with Generation Y.

Colquhoun reports that Sydney-based researcher and author Michael McQueen tracks the changing tastes of Gen-Y and believes the inventor of genre-defining devices such as the iPhone, iPad and iPod could be largely irrelevant to people under 30 within five years.

In his most recent book, “Winning The Battle For Relevance,” based on a survey of more than 500 companies McQueen created a “relevance curve” to describe a company’s importance to its core market and he believes Apple is “past the turning point” unless they can release another game-changing product like they did with the iPhone and the iPad, and pointing to Forbes magazine’s annual ranking of innovative companies, which last year dropped Apple from 5th to 26th, and contending that the rising profile of portable device competitors such as Samsung is creating “a subtle shift in what’s now cool” and that the ” iPhone is not the badge of cool that it was even 12 months ago.”

Editor’s note: My reflexive response is to say “who cares?” I’m well past the age where being, or at least maintaing a facade of appearing, cool has lost any purchase. I don’t use Apple products because they’re cool. I use tham because the quality of both the hardware and the overall user experience is unmatched by any other platforms, and that’s what keeps me coming back.

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