Innovation important? Half of Apple revenue came from products non-existent three years ago

IdeaFestival 2009 speaker and managing editor for Forbes' online content, Dan Roth (@danroth on Twitter) pointed out the following example of the importance and market-creating power of innovation - and since I can hear Rob May clearing his throat now - of executing on that creative vision.

Exploiting its reputation for turning out easy-to-use products, must-have industrial design and putting people at the center of the media universe, over the past 11 quarters Apple's revenue has grown an astounding 37.5 percent year-over-year. Coming from a nearly 35-year old company that was essentially irrelevant 15 years ago, it's an extraordinary comeback. Forbes Tech:

Common sense tells the casual observer that this can't go on. But common sense would be wrong, writes Robert Paul Leitao -- a.k.a. DawnTreader -- a regular at the Mac Observer's Apple Finance Board and one of the more thoughtful commentators on this site. In an entry on his Posts at Eventide blog, he outlines the reasons why the law of large numbers does not apply to Apple, at least at this point in time.

'In the June quarter close to 50% of Apple's revenue was derived from products that did not exist in the market just over three years ago,' he writes. 'In the September and December quarters, well over 50% of Apple's reported revenue will be derived from iPhone and iPad sales. At the moment there's no practical limit to the size of the market for these two products.' (emphasis supplied)

Co-producer of Titanic and Avatar, Jon Landau; poet and author of "Push," on which the movie "Precious" was based, Sapphire; theoretical physicist and author of "From Eternity to Here," Sean Carroll; prodigious savant, synesthete and author of "Born on a Blue Day," Daniel Tammet, and the man who pulled off the "artistic crime of the century," Philippe Petit - each will be at IdeaFestival 2010.

They could give you ideas. Early-Bird All-Access Passes to see each of these accomplished individuals - and many more - are now on sale.

Pictured above is the unfortunate struggle over an early iPhone displayed by IF 2007 presenter and Apple original, Steve Wozniak.

The phone was not damaged.


Image: Geoff Oliver Bugbee