I’ve said before that Apple’s product line-up was getting too confusing. This week’s announcements seem to underscore that with several other websites noting this.

MacRumors has this to say: The launch of a new iPad Pro and entry-level iPad means that Apple’s ‌iPad‌ lineup is the largest it has been in recent memory. The wide range of choices, inconsistent features, and confusing compatibility with accessories may be a source of confusion for customers looking for a new ‌iPad‌.

9to5Mac has this to say: Yesterday saw the launch of the all-new iPad 10, as well as updated versions of the 11-inch and 12.9-inch iPad Pro, which makes for a rather extensive iPad line-up! This could be viewed in two ways. Apple’s argument would be that the company now offers a model for every need, while a certain Apple co-founder might have been found drawing a 2×2 grid about now.

Macworld has this to say: Apple’s new tablet lineup is confusing, redundant, and overwhelming.

° From Creative Blog: Apple reveals new iPad line-up (and we’re really confused)

I could go on, but you get the idea. Apple now has an iPad Pro, iPad Air, iPad, and iPad mini. Why? Couldn’t this be paired now to just the iPad Pro, iPad Air, and iPad mini?

When Steve Jobs returned to Apple in 1997, he drastically simplified the product line-up. It’s time for the company to do the same again.

Upon Job’s return, Apple was selling a dozen versions of the Mac. His strategy was to produce only four products: one desktop and one portable device aimed at both consumers and professionals. 

That precise strategy won’t work today because Apple has more product categories, but the principal — a streamlined product line with more focus on quality and innovation — is still relevant. Here’s what I propose:

The Mac. There will be one desktop for professionals (the Mac Pro OR Mac Studio), one for “prosumers” who both produce and consume content (the Mac mini), one for consumers (the iMac). The laptop line would offer the MacBook Pro for professionals and the MacBook Air for consumers. Of course, the desktop and laptops would be continue to be offered in different sizes.

° The iPhone. I’d limit the line-up to the iPhone Pro Max (for professionals), iPhone Pro (for prosumers), and iPhone SE (for consumers).

° The Apple Watch. The smartwatch line-up would include the Apple Watch SE, the Apple Watch Series x, and the Apple Watch Ultra.

Streamlining these product line-ups would make it easier for customers to decide what device they need. It would also give a range of price options in each category.

Considering that Apple also makes AirPods, AirPods Pro, AirPods Max, Apple TV, Studio Display, and HomePod minis with more devices certainly coming (such as the rumored “Apple Glasses” and, perhaps, the Apple Car), the company needs to make sure that folks aren’t overwhelmed with too many products in too many categories.

The accompanying graphic is courtesy of ClipArtMax.

Article provided with permission from AppleWorld.Today