Amazon, Apple, Facebook, and Google
For setting the innovation agenda—but which
company reigns supreme?
Amazon, Apple, Facebook, and Google are transformational firms,
deservedly obsessions of the business world. But if you had to pick,
which one would you say is the most innovative—literally, the most
innovative company in the world? (And then who’s No. 2, No. 3, and No.
4?) The four were featured on our cover last November (“The Great Tech
Wars”). Since then, they have jostled for the No. 1 title—with Amazon’s
Kindle Fire tablet, Apple’s Siri voice assistant, Facebook’s Timeline interface, and Google’s reinvention of You Tube as a niche-programming
powerhouse. Yet each company has fallen victim to hubris, causing
public-relations firestorms and some sloppy products.
The top slot can go to only one, and we’ll award it in a few pages. But
why should we have all the fun? Flip the page and open the gatefold
to find quizzes, games, and brainteasers that can help you rate the Fab
Four—measured from their wildest new ideas to their cultural cachet.
Then see if your opinion matches ours. If it doesn’t, worry not. In a
month or so, one of these firms will surely disrupt everything again.