Ultimately, it is Apple's customers who determine the success of the company, no matter how well the products are made. Apple's mission is to make the best products in the world, but that doesn't matter if no one is buying them. Consumers' tastes change very fast, sometimes almost at the blink of an eye. Their wallets, while sometimes seemingly never empty, do eventually close from time to time (shocking, I know).
I can't see Apple releasing iPads every six months as it tries to stave off competition, but then again I didn't expect the fourth-gen iPad in October. I'm sure Apple has a few tricks up its sleeve we don't know about. It would be wise to make sure these tricks turn into treats and not trash.
-- Written by Chris Ciaccia in New York
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