Monday, September 24, 2012

10 Things Apple Won't Tell You

This is the bulk of an article that appeared on MarketWatch on Aug. 7, 2012. It was penned by Quentin Fottrell who writes for SmartMoney.com.You can chase the article down but this will give you the general idea of its message.My comment is at the bottom with reference to a post I wrote some time ago

           10 things Apple won’t tell you


1. “Our customers are worn out.” All that initial excitement over the first iPhone or iPad has quickly given way to what analysts are dubbing “upgrade fatigue”—with even Apple’s most loyal customers upset about the steady stream of newer models 
2. “Be careful of that app.” Smurfberries—that virtual red fruit that’s the primary source of nutrition for Smurfs—may sound like cheap fun, but costs can add up. Madison Kay, an eight-year-old from Rockville, Md., unwittingly spent $1,400 buying Smurfberries while playing the game “Smurfs’ Village” 
3. “We’re getting in the way.” Checking an occasional Facebook update via iPhone during dinner is the least of some couple’s worries. One in five people reach for their phone as a 21st Century replacement for the post-coital cigarette 
4. “You may spend more with our devices.” Not only do Apple’s products tend to be pricier than those of competitors, people spend more using them. The average iPhone owner, for example, spends over 10% more on their monthly bills than other pre-paid smartphone users—$90 versus $81
5. “We need another game-changing gadget.” Upgrade fatigue isn’t the only thing critics dislike about Apple’s product rollouts; some say the new products aren’t new enough. Investors are growing impatient with Apple’s pipeline 
6. “The iPhone is overpriced—even compared to the iPad.” The iPhone costs hundreds of dollars less than the iPad, but Apple has much higher profit margins for the phone than the tablet, experts say. Here’s how it breaks down: Apple earned gross margins of up to 58% on its United States iPhone sales between April 2010 and March 2012 and margins of 23% to 32% on the iPad 
7. “Don’t be fooled by our soft sell.” When Carmine Gallo recently walked into the glass-fronted Apple Store in Pleasanton, Calif., the “concierge” wanted to talk to his two children about what Disney movies they could get on the iPad 
8. “Our features are falling behind.” Some consumers want Apple’s iPhone to follow the Android market’s lead by bringing out bigger screens. Nancy Batchelor, a teacher who lives in Washington D.C., recently gave up her iPhone because it was too small. “I seriously can’t read anything on that phone,” she says. Batchelor has plenty of other options to choose from that have larger screen, Samsung’s SII has a 4.8-inch display—dwarfing the iPhone’s 3.5 inches 
9. “We’ll hook you for life.” Storing digital content like movies, music and books on Apple’s “ecosystem”—the company’s compatible suite of hardware and software—may lock in customers for life. (that is the plan) 
10. “Our fans don’t care if we screw up.” Of course, many customers are happy to be part of Apple’s global community: A Facebook page, “Fans of Apple,” has over 935,000 members. And when it comes to controversy about or criticism of the company, experts say the company’s loyal fan base often have a blind spot. Apple’s marketing encourages this tribal following, industry pros say. The company’s borderline “fairytale” or “religious” language also helps stir up passionate support for the brand and upsets people when apple is criticized, says Lindstrom, the branding expert and author, who adds, “Apple knows how to inspire its customers.” Case in point: the company’s website contains this statement about the third incarnation of its tablet computer: “The iPad is a magical window where nothing comes between you and what you love.”


MY  COMMENT;  It appears that Apple continues to roll on like a juggernaut, nothing has been able to take the shine off this company. Apple has even enlisted the courts and legal system to fuel its advance, by attacking rivals and trying to ban competing products from the market place. I continue to be amazed at how much American taxpayer money is spent buying products from this "American company" that does all its manufacturing overseas. Schools, the military and government have poured massive amounts of  our tax dollars into Apple products.  Please take time to read my March 14th post, tHE pOISON aPPLE

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