I'm currently sitting watching the stream from today's Apple event in Cupertino, they've just announced the iPad Air 2 (much to the chagrin of one of my iPad Air - owning team) and it reminded me how much things have changed in the last 3-4 years thanks to Apple.
Just this morning I witnessed a scene which distilled this change more clearly than I would have ever thought possible. On the way to work i stopped off at our local Tesco filling station, it was about 9:30 - hardly peak time, and it's a big station so you wouldn't expect it to be too busy - but what greeted me was an end-of-the-world-style scene reminiscent of a George A. Romero movie - cars queueing 5 deep, people shouting at each other in frustration and trying to barge each other out of the way in order to get to the pumps.
Did some kind of flash fuel crisis which cause panic buying? Was there some kind of crazy special offer they were all racing to get? No... it was an upgrade of the pumps.
Last night, the station had upgraded to the new system pictured above which allows you to pay at the pump. The problem was that, faced with this new pretty colour screen, the customers couldn't work out that they had to use the buttons below to control it - they all assumed that it was a touch-screen and therefore couldn't get it to work, they didn't even notice the fisher-price-style buttons beneath it!
4-5 years ago this would have been inconceivable - most people rarely encountered touch screens in their daily lives - but now the technology is so ubiquitous people find it difficult to understand when it's not used. So, did iPad change everything? I have to say, I think so.
Good work Apple - looking forward to getting my hands on the iPad Air 2!
(Where's my Apple TV update?! Please!!!)