Apple Thoughts Now Live

I figured I’d just re-publish my welcome message, so here it is:

“I’m thrilled to announce the launch of the fifth Thoughts Media site: Apple Thoughts. It’s been almost two years since we launched our last site (Zune Thoughts), and I’m really excited to be expanding our network with another great site. Why an Apple site? For the past three years or so, I’ve been watching the “Apple tide” rising. By that, I mean the overall impact that Apple has in the market – and I mean real impact, not the mainstream media fawning and hype that accompanies every new product Apple releases. The number of people I know that have switched to Macs is staggering – the painful launch of Vista certainly didn’t help things, but Apple is making tremendous gains in the market. Earlier this year, 40% of all notebooks sold at retail over $1000 USD were Macbooks, and who can forget this picture? The iPhone? Game-changing. Not the right phone everyone, and definitely over-hyped, but it changed the whole landscape of smartphones and what people expect from them. The Apple tide is rising, and as someone who makes a living online, it would be a poor decision for me to ignore that fact.

Now I know what some of you may be thinking: an Apple enthusiast site? From the guy who really doesn’t seem to like Apple very much, and has been known to be quite critical of Apple, iPods, and Steve Jobs in particular? Well, here’s the second announcement: Apple Thoughts is the first Thoughts Media franchise site. By that I mean that I will not be in charge of running it: Thoughts Media Inc. provides the server, back-end infrastructure, and monetization support, while the franchisee provides 100% of the editorial content and community management. I’ve tapped a very talented, opinionated, passionate, Apple-lovin’ guy to be the Executive Editor of Apple Thoughts. His name some of you will doubtless recognize: Vincent Ferrari. Vincent has been a member of the Thoughts Media community for a number of years, and was on the Digital Home Thoughts review team for a time. He’s got the right kind of personality to be a fantastic Executive Editor, and if I ever need an AOL account cancelled, I know exactly who to call.

Here’s a special request to everyone reading this: if you use a Mac, an iPhone, or any product made by Apple, please make a commitment to this new community. Starting a community is tough work – it’s a classic chicken-and-egg scenario where, when someone comes to a Web site with sparse comments and empty forums, they think “Oh, I won’t make this community my home, there’s no one here”. So I’m asking all of you Mac-usin’, iPhone-totin’ types to read, comment, contribute, share, help, and above all grow the Apple Thoughts community. My hope is that by this time next year, Apple Thoughts will have a vibrant, passionate, helpful community of Apple fans. We need you.

Please join me in welcoming Apple Thoughts!”

Oh, and I’ll add this from a forum post I made since some people seem to be freaking out that I launched an Apple-focus site, even if I’m not the one running it:

“I don’t own an iPhone, I don’t own a Mac, and I don’t own any Apple product now that my wife’s iPod Shuffle broke (which didn’t surprise me, but let’s not get into that ). But I’m not going to be writing here on Apple Thoughts other than perhaps commenting in the forums like everyone else – I’m not even a member of the Apple Thoughts editorial team! I won’t be writing reviews or news posts. So from an editorial perspective, I remain completely focused on Windows Mobile, Windows Vista, the Zune, and overall Windows ecosystem. I’m still a Windows fan, and you can expect the editorial coverage on the other sites to remain the same. I’m super excited about Windows Mobile 7, Windows 7 (just got my beta invite!), and I remain firmly committed to the Windows world.”