Tech critics and market followers said Apple needed to produce a cheap iPhone to compete. The stock market wailed when Apple announced the new iPhone line that wasn’t aimed to compete against low priced Android plastic. How did they not see that coming?
Not In The Junk Business
Among high profile technology companies, Apple remains a mystery; highly secretive, doggedly disciplined, and steadfast in a resolve to not do what others do.
Think Different, indeed. Apple’s new iPhones are priced higher than the techno elite expected, therefore, ipso facto, Apple is doomed. Again.
In an unusual interview that contains more hype than substance, Bloomberg Businessweek cornered CEO Tim Cook, iOS and OS X chief Craig Federighi, and design honcho Jony Ive.
The end result is typical Apple. ‘There’s always a large junk part of the market.’ And, ‘We’re not in the junk business.’
How could Wall Street and the technology elite not have seen that coming?
Amazon and Google both sell hardware at nearly the cost of manufacturing, hence they lose money on every sale, hoping to make it up in volume.
Chinese manufacturers are selling Android-based smartphones and tablets at cut rate prices, while hoping marketshare will grow and profits will follow. So far, they have not.
Tim Cook in 2013:
There’s a segment of the market that really wants a product that does a lot for them, and I want to compete like crazy for those customers. I’m not going to lose sleep over that other market, because it’s just not who we are. Fortunately, both of these markets are so big, and there’s so many people that care and want a great experience from their phone or their tablet, that Apple can have a really good business.
Tim Cook in 2009:
We believe that we are on the face of the earth to make great products and thats not changing. We are constantly focusing on innovating. We believe in the simple not the complex. We believe that we need to own and control the primary technologies behind the products that we make, and participate only in markets where we can make a significant contribution. We believe in saying no to thousands of projects, so that we can really focus on the few that are truly important and meaningful to us. We believe in deep collaboration and cross-pollination of our groups, which allow us to innovate in a way that others cannot. And frankly, we dont settle for anything less than excellence in every group in the company, and we have the self-honesty to admit when were wrong and the courage to change. And I think regardless of who is in what job those values are so embedded in this company that Apple will do extremely well.
Looking at Apple’s history since co-founder Steve Jobs return in 1997, one has to wonder what, exactly, has changed since his death? And, one must wonder why those in the tech media and stock analysts have yet to figure out that Apple, indeed, walks to a different drummer, and, unlike the days when Apple was the Mac, the company now has hundreds of millions of rabid fans who appreciate the extra level of quality Apple manufactures.
Cheap products is not where Apple has ever played, not where the company is playing today, and it’s not likely to be promoting plastic junk in the future.**
** With apologies to anyone who bought a candy-colored iBook in the 1990s.