The Internet will help save Apple, chief executive Gil Amelio told delegates at the Internet World show on Wednesday, minutes before a demonstration of Macintosh Net technologies crashed on stage.
With only 48 hours to go until the bloodletting begins in Apple?s latest round of job cuts, Amelio seemed pleased to be talking about something upbeat. "We recognise Apple?s future is on the Internet," he said during his keynote address on day one of the Los Angeles-based conference.
Amelio boasted that 64 per cent of professional Web site development was carried out on Macintosh kit, a sign, he claimed, that the company?s strengths in desktop publishing were carrying over to the Internet. "Content is king," he said. "And if content is king, then I think it can be fairly said that Apple is the kingmaker."
"Even in commerce, it's the techniques of publishing that will carry the day," he continued. "Because of the new capabilities, Internet publishing may be as profoundly transforming to society as movable type."
He insisted the radical restrucuring announced on Friday will not impact on Apple's new-found devotion to the Internet. "Far from jeopardising our commitment to Internet publishing in our restructuring, we will in fact broaden it," he claimed.
From a product perspective, Amelio highighted version 3.0 of Quicktime, which he promised would be Web-enabled, and version 8.0 of the Mac OS, which will contain a personal Web server capability.
But there was no mention made during his speech of Opendoc, once positioned as a cornerstone of the company?s Internet strategy, but looking increasingly sidelined as Apple?s entire product line comes under review.
Amelio attempted to show off a number of Mac-based Web site development tools - including Cyberstudio from Go Live, but met with laughter from the audience when the demonstrations crashed on two occasions.
But he did earn one spontaneous round of applause, when the master of ceremonies reminded the audience that Amelio - described as having "one of the toughest jobs in the US" - was responsible for rehiring Steve Jobs to Apple.
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