Top Story

Apple Causes Stir with 2 New Releases!

Apple has announced iPhone 5s featuring an all-new A7 chip with new features all packed into a remarkable thin and light design, including an all-new 8 megapixel iSight camera with True Tone flash and introducing Touch ID, an innovative way to simply and securely unlock your phone with just the touch of a finger. iPhone 5s comes with iOS 7, the most significant iOS update since the original iPhone, engineered for 64-bit technology and featuring hundreds of great new features, including Control Center, Notification Center, improved Multitasking, AirDrop, enhanced Photos, Safari, Siri and iTunes Radio.

“iPhone 5s is the most forward-thinking smartphone in the world, delivering desktop class architecture in the palm of your hand,” said Philip Schiller, Apple’s senior vice president of Worldwide Marketing. “iPhone 5s sets a new standard for smartphones, packed into its beautiful and refined design are breakthrough features that really matter to people, like Touch ID, a simple and secure way to unlock your phone with just a touch of your finger.”

iPhone 5s makes it even easier to connect to high-speed networks with support for up to 13 LTE wireless bands. With download speeds up to 100 Mbps, you can browse, download and stream content even faster. iPhone 5s includes dual-band 802.11 a/b/g/n Wi-Fi support for up to 150 Mbps² and Bluetooth 4.0.

iPhone 5c features an all-new design crafted from a single, hard-coated polycarbonate body with a steel reinforced frame for a solid, sturdy feel. The steel frame holds the internal components and also doubles as the iPhone 5c’s multiband antenna.

iPhone 5c comes in blue, green, pink, yellow and white and will be available in the UK for a suggested retail price of £469 (£390.83 ex VAT) for the 16GB model and £549 (£457.50 ex VAT) for the 32GB model.

Tony Cripps, principal device analyst at Ovum provides his view on the new releases, “Even post-Jobs Apple still does great theatre, even if most of what was announced was unusually well-heralded in the blogosphere.

“Clearly there’s little need for gimmicks in the flagship 5S, in a launch replete with significant spec upgrades over and beyond the usual screen improvements. Apple, is certainly offering meaningful innovation here. Moving to a 64-bit architecture means Apple can genuinely claim to have brought something new to the smartphone party. It should certainly help the company further cement its lead as a mobile gaming platform and will give the Android fraternity something to think about in a space whose significance is sometimes downplayed beyond the gaming world.

“Ingratiating itself to the burgeoning community of health and fitness application developers with new sensors is also a good move by Apple at a time when consumer and professional interest in those categories are booming.

“Meanwhile the integrated capacitive fingerprint sensor will build legitimacy for the technology in mainstream consumer electronics, although privacy concerns are bound to raise their heads in these newly paranoid times.

“Anyone expecting Apple to come truly down market with the iPhone 5C was fooling themselves. The day that happens is the day the company signals that it has run out of headroom for expansion. It’s far from ready to concede that yet as it’s greater interest in Japan and China show, although the mooted tie up with China Mobile wasn’t announced as this comment was written.”

Malik Saadi, principal analyst at Informa Telecoms & Media, comments “The company’s model has been to upgrade the iPhone every year to address the replacement market and bank new customers among enthusiastic users. At the same time, it keeps the older version to address the remaining segments of the market, mainly users who want a better user experience but cannot afford to pay a premium price.

However, this business model is now reaching its limits as the audience for the traditional iPhone is saturating and the company is struggling to bank new users. This is especially true in emerging markets, particularly in China where local brands are now trying to match the iPhone experience at significantly lower prices. The mass market is a lot more difficult to address with a single device as it requires a more complex segmentation and product differentiation should be physically obvious to the end users. As a result, Apple will need to create variants specifically designed for the mass market or even regions depending on local requirements. These variants should come with additional differentiators both at the industrial-design and reference-design levels.

The expected announcement of the two models today will mark a key change in Apple’s strategy as the company will break with its six year old business model of “one device fits all segments”. Launching a cheaper smartphone will definitely help the company to reach new audiences, certainly in emerging markets where device subsidy is not a common practice and affordability is key.”

Dr Ronald Klingebiel, Assistant Professor of Strategy at Warwick Business School, said: “The new iPhones are innovative, but they are still iPhones. Strategically, the direction seems unchanged. The lower-end iPhone is to address price competition in an increasingly commoditizing market, but the likes of Lenovo and ZTE achieve sufficient quality at much lower cost. At the upper end, the business model is about to change. There is a chance that the majority of value capture, which had migrated from the handset to the combination of OS and app store, will move on to apps themselves, reducing the cut for middle men. New entrants are gearing up to prise open the tight lock between handsets, operating systems, and app stores: Sailfish, Ubuntu, Firefox, and even Tizen offer next-generation operating systems that support the trend towards interoperable HTML-based apps. This could lead to an unbundling of the industry value chain and reduce Apple’s possibility to extract value from the iOS-app store nexus.”

The following two tabs change content below.

David Dungay

Editor - Comms Business Magazine
If you have any comments please click the link
Comments 0

Leave a Comment