Apple hopes that Next's object-oriented, Java-enabled open development platform will significantly improve its Internet and intranet position because its technology is agile.
Well, indeed. Agile! Internet! Java! Objects! Let me tell you, these were the AJAX, user-generated content and social networking of their day.
Interestingly, at the time of the acquisition, the main appeal of Next was seen to be WebObjects, the now-rather-obscure Objective-C/Java web application platform. iTunes Store uses it, but I doubt much else does. Of course, the real gems were NeXTStep (on which the abandoned Rhapsody project and ultimately MacOS X were based) and Jobs himself, who became CEO again in short order.