Has Apple Lost Its Edge?


With Apple's stock down 25% since its peak, industry watchers and stock market analysts are beginning to pose this almost unimaginable question.

Of course, Apple is still a fabulously successful company. They remain the most valuable and profitable corporation in the world. Apple's design, manufacturing and distribution capabilities are the envy of consumer product companies. Their innovation, marketing and merchandising prowess is legendary.

Any ripple in Apple's skyrocketing success can be a catalyst for Apple watchers to question Apple's future.



After 5 years of domination in the "gadget" market, it seems hard to believe that this question would be ever be raised. However, there are several key categories of their business where Apple has lost its lead and fallen behind in some areas.

Let's review each of the categories.

Smartphones

In 2007, Apple reinvented the smartphone market with their launch of the iPhone. Since its announcement, the iPhone has been the unequivocal leader in the smartphone category. However, beginning in late 2012, there is strong evidence that the Google and Samsung smartphone models are narrowing Apple's dominance in this market category. In fact, many customers and product experts consider Googles Nexus model and Samsung's Galaxy S3 to be better than the iPhone 5. Samsung's expected release of their Galaxy S4 may put further pressure on the iPhone 5.

Tablets

There is no question that Apple set the standard in the tablet category. The iPad dominated the tablet market in the first two years and continues to be the industry leader for the larger tablet models. However, Apple entered the mini tablet market late, and lags their competitors in this category. When the iPad Mini was introduced in 2012, it disappointed many Apple fans with its lower resolution display. Apple decided to use the non-retina display technology on the iPad Mini to maintain a higher profit margin. That decision may backfire.

Related: Yahoo Finance - Apple lost its edge

Cloud-Based Services and Apps
A key Apple strength is their winning strategy to gain end-to-end control of their Cloud-based services and applications. The apps on their mobile, desktop and laptop devices are all coordinated and controlled through the cloud. Apple's native apps and utilities (e.g. email, phone, Safari, iTunes, etc) provide the user with a common interface and user experience across their devices. Apple has also put tight controls on their app developers to maintain a consistent level of software quality and user experience.

However, Apple's decision to use their own Apple Maps app instead of Google Maps on the iPhone 5 hurt them. The Apple Maps app tarnished Apples brand image. Apple's resistance to return to the Google map application angered iPhone 5 buyers. In the meantime, Apple has lost ground to competitors who are aggressively producing superior apps and services that whittle away at Apple's market share. The more non-Apple apps and services sold, the less influence Apple has to grow there iPhone, iPad and Mac sales.



Clearly Apple remains as a powerful brand. Will it last?

Should Apple board replace Tim Cook?

Author; Andy G
http://www.helpjet.net/   Drivers and firmware updates

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