...as most people would have bet their money on Apple setting up a better show. But nope. Not this time. Apple's event felt pretty much "uneventful". It was a 90 minute trip to a retirement home. The same story could have been told in 30 minutes or less.
Microsoft on the other hand won big time. The company has invested heavily in innovation in the recent years. Microsoft's trip to open-source land or its endeavor in laptop country are worth to note. With the holo lens the company is the leader in 3D innovation or production-ready augmented reality. And now this: Microsoft created a new category for designers. A PC that seems similar to the iMac, but is in fact much more. It is a true surface for artists. A genius design coupled to the right software. Sounds like Apple, right?
Apple on the other hand only presented a new MacBook Pro. The MBP may still feel like the most premium laptop, but the Surface Book is so close behind that Apple needed a bold move. The answer was the new and all redesigned MBP. It gets rid of some (beloved) keys to introduce a small touch bar. The touch bar is running a variant of watchOS and cannot be used in low-level scenarios. Also it can only be useful if the MBP is opened. Sometimes people just use docking stations with external displays. Finally, the new MBP fully embraces USB-C (good move). Unfortunately, all existing peripherals (USB, HDMI, some other display ports or even SD card reader slots) are gone for good. Apple users will most likely carry even more adapters in the next years than anticipated!
The Internet's reaction was prompt and undoubtedly the most harsh one I've seen in a while (towards an Apple event). The company is just not innovative any more and most new product designs - while having something great and refreshing at their core - are orthogonal to what users want. Of course, in the past we've seen similar critics when Apple announced something new (or rather dropping something old). But this time the voices to justify / celebrate the change are quite gentle.
So who would you bet on providing the better event in the future? Apple with its fanbase or Microsoft with its new hunger for innovation? Independent of your choice: Microsoft entering the PC hardware business is certainly a good thing.