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Apple dominates IT technology news. It's obvious to anyone who follows the industry, but now a new study, conducted by the Pew Research Center’s Project for Excellence in Journalism, shows just how much IT journalists love Apple.
Based on content from 52 newspapers, broadcast outlets and websites, published between June 2009 and June 2010, the study found that 15.1% of tech stories were primarily about Apple. Meanwhile, 11.4% were about Google, and only 3% were about Microsoft.
If you look at how important Apple really is in the world of IT technology, these numbers may seem odd. Microsoft's Windows is the dominant OS for PCs. . Apple sells a lot of PCs and laptops, but so do companies such as Toshiba and Acer, and you don't see them in the news nearly as often as Apple. Simply put, if you look only at numbers, there is no clear explanation for Apple's dominance of the news realm.
One can argue that Apple simply has the best PR department in the business, and that probably isn't far from the truth. But there's something about Apple's products and strategy that makes readers and journalists swoon over every Apple announcement.
Here's the important question: Is Apple's omnipresence in the news justified, or is it just a cheap way to get readers attention?
In my view, it's mostly justified. Apple really does think differently from other tech companies. Most tech companies try to satisfy different verticals with several product lines. Nokia, for example, has dozens of phones on the market; Apple has one — the iPhone. Therefore, iPhone-related news will always seem infinitely more interesting than pretty much anything Nokia can offer, unless it has a technological breakthrough on its hands.
And yes, Apple does PR well. It never focuses on technicalities; it always highlights those features of its products that make consumers' lives easier. It also often praises its products way too much (hence the iPad is constantly referred to as "magical" in Apple's promo materials), but it can get away with it because every product launch and every upgrade has more than enough real improvements that users care about.
Finally, Apple creates breakthrough products. Apple was not always the first to invent a new form factor or a new type of device, but it was stellar in creating the first one that mattered. The iMac set the standard for an all-in-one PC, the iPhone did the same for the smartphone, and the iPad has redefined our notion of the tablet.
Couple those achievements with some great engineering, fantastic industrial design and Apple's recent focus on creating platforms for third-party apps (instead of just hardware), and you've got a company whose every move is so important, no tech news outlet will want to miss it.