1. jsarino's Avatar
    Not to put the Nexus down, but for me it's a matter of preference. The Nexus at $49.99 and iPhone 5s at $99. I'm gonna go with the 5s. IPhones fit my needs in every way.
    No worries...I figure at iMore, most of the members would lean towards the 5s if given the above choice anyways. I only pointed out the price as it's the only carrier that's selling the Nexus 5 at a contract price. Why T-Mobile is overcharging is beyond me.

    I don't think Apple needs to create a "budget-priced," off-contract device, yet. Even with the Nexus devices offering a lot, at their price point, the majority of people still don't flock to them.
    I think that the Nexus phones' target market for years was to first to developers and tech enthusiasts and not the average consumer. The Galaxy Nexus was marketed to be more mainstream by being offered on contract with Verizon and Sprint. However, the issues owners had with getting timely updates from either carrier, not to mention making it difficult to root and unlock a phone that's meant to be tinkered with may have caused Google to take more control again when the Nexus 4, and now Nexus 5 came along. Personally, as much as I like my Nexus 5, I would probably steer the average consumer to purchase a more mainstream Android (or Apple, Windows, etc.) phone. The Nexus 5 in essence is a "minimalist" phone which isn't for everyone.
    MERCDROID likes this.
    11-15-2013 01:44 AM
  2. jmr1015's Avatar
    The only people that really think Apple should expand in to emerging markets are Wall Street types... Because all they think is emerging markets = dollar signs... and since Apple is a publicly traded company, all they want is what's best for the stock valuation and share holders. Not what's best for the products, or customers.

    Apple has always managed to balance on that razors edge... Right between building high quality, high value products, that offer a best in class user experience with unmatched post-purchase support, for a very competitive price when compared to similarly equipped alternatives... and maintaining great profit margins.

    A company doesn't need to dominate market share in order to be successful. Especially in a market whose base is growing, and diversifying exponentially like the mobile industry. Considering Apple sells more iPhones, year over year, and makes more money, year over year, even with their loss of market share... I don't think they have much to worry about.
    Ipheuria, Fit24 and Fishfam like this.
    11-15-2013 02:30 AM
  3. Alik Malix's Avatar
    Considering that 99% of cheap-end phones are NOT making any money for their manufacturer - I don't see how building a cheap iPhone will help Apple. Apple never claimed iPhone 5C was cheap, nor was it their intention. I really dont think Apple is interested in the "Junk" market (Tim Cooks words, not mine). From all the interviews, or keynotes, I get a feeling that Apple cant care less about the low-end market taking up 100% of its (low-end market) share. Just like a mechanic who can fix any car (and be profitable) only prefers to work on Porsches - he can afford that choice.

    To answer Original Post: Can Apple profit from the low-end market? Yes, sir. Should it take advantage? I think it may harm the company more than it will benefit. And dont forget, China and India SOLD out with the latest offering from Apple - 5S super expensive alternative to other phones (<---sarcasm) is selling off just as fast as in the US.

    I rather they concentrate on ONE only model - give us the BEST of Hardware+Software combo possible, not spread the goodies amongst a few models such as: Samsung Active (waterproof, but lower specs), Samsung S4 (popular but slowed by too much bloat and hit-or-miss gimmicks), Samsung Note3 (big battery, but too expensive), Samsung Mini (easy to handle, but 2 year old specs).... etc...
    Ipheuria likes this.
    11-15-2013 04:38 AM
  4. Easy-G's Avatar
    Yes, I know its recent offerings were supposed to cover different segments, but can Apple really afford to NOT court the same markets that the Moto G and Nexus 5 are aimed at?

    On the one hand, Apple wins by not diluting its products with overly cheap offerings. Customers perceive iOS products to be premium, and high satisfaction scores indicate they remain happy. On the other hand, IDC numbers seem to indicate Android (in particular) and even WP8 are getting headwinds. Can Apple sustain growth without a "real" budget offering?

    Discuss.
    Two reasons why they must stay high-end only. 1) Public perception of being high-end requires that they only put out products of a particular quality and price point. The use of the Apple logo as a signalling device is hugely important to their brand. 2) I think there's a trade-off in putting out more affordable devices that isn't in Apple's favor. For the mom's, pop's, grandma's and grandpop's out there, there's no need to buy top-dollar Apple products if an affordable alternative is there with the same essential user-friendliness. Apple is already hurting from this in the iPad 2. For the younger, status and feature-conscious crowd, I think the top-dollar offering is all they want out of Apple. The 5c is all the price break they can afford without cannibalizing their flagship offering too much - $100 off, updated front-camera and battery, colour, all current iOS features, and performance that is indistinguishable from the 5s for the average user.
    11-15-2013 05:58 AM
  5. Algus's Avatar
    Apple has some great mid-range products. The Mac Mini base model is an outstanding computer for $700. If Apple has missed the boat anywhere, it's that I think they could bring some great displays at lower price points and still have the beauty and quality that the Apple name has come to mean. A 21.5'' 1080p screen wouldn't be unreasonable and an entry-level style Macbook (aka letting me get a nice 15.6'' laptop that doesn't cost $2k) would also be feasible. I personally feel like it was a mistake to retire the Macbook and keep only the Air and Pro lines and that there is a niche they could fill there.

    Eh, as long as I keep getting raises and promotions at work. Now that I've been able to buy into OS X, I don't want to go back.
    jsarino, Laura Knotek and Fishfam like this.
    11-15-2013 08:50 AM
  6. Chris Parsons's Avatar
    The thing is Apple is losing ground in emerging markets, since even a 5C is too expensive for most users in those markets. Devices like the Nokia Lumia 520 are selling well in emerging markets, and the new Motorola Moto G will probably be a great seller in emerging markets.
    While I totally agree here, I often go back and forth on whether or not Apple even cares about emerging markets. I mean, they're not exactly hurting for money and their devices sell plenty outside of emerging markets. It feels like leaving money on the table but do they want to make a 'cheap' product, just to serve those regions?
    Laura Knotek and taz323 like this.
    11-15-2013 11:45 AM
  7. jsarino's Avatar
    I personally feel like it was a mistake to retire the Macbook and keep only the Air and Pro lines and that there is a niche they could fill there.
    It doesn't necessarily have to be a budget-conscious laptop. Maybe something that's mid-priced ($700 range like a Mac Mini) and decent (and possible to upgrade components on your own), and heck, I'd consider getting one as a second laptop.
    Laura Knotek likes this.
    11-15-2013 11:55 AM
  8. Becjr's Avatar
    If love to see Apple bring their quality of excellence into a more affordable device. I'm sure they've investigated the option; in fact I wouldn't be surprised to see the iPhone 5C evolve into this mythical device over the next few years... Apple is like Blizzard in this respect.
    Laura Knotek likes this.
    11-15-2013 02:18 PM
  9. Laura Knotek's Avatar
    If love to see Apple bring their quality of excellence into a more affordable device. I'm sure they've investigated the option; in fact I wouldn't be surprised to see the iPhone 5C evolve into this mythical device over the next few years... Apple is like Blizzard in this respect.



    I'm sorry if this is a dumb question, but what is Blizzard?





    Sent from my Lumia 900 using Tapatalk
    11-15-2013 02:35 PM
  10. jmr1015's Avatar
    If love to see Apple bring their quality of excellence into a more affordable device. I'm sure they've investigated the option; in fact I wouldn't be surprised to see the iPhone 5C evolve into this mythical device over the next few years... Apple is like Blizzard in this respect.
    I think for what Apple offers, in terms of quality, their devices are very affordable. Competitors have similarly priced equipment that doesn't even begin to touch Apple's level of quality. What competitors offer at those cheaper price points that Apple doesn't, is low quality junk, in my opinion.

    What people seem to want, wether they realize it or not, is Apple to make junk. You can't really realistically expect Apple to make products of similarly high quality of their current offerings, yet priced for emerging markets, and expect those products not to cannibalize the sales of their higher priced, higher margin products. That would be a recipe for decreasing profits at the expense of marginally increasing overall market share and revenue, and possibly commoditizing a brand that currently is the most valuable brand on Earth.

    All for the sake of recovering market share that they never truly had in the first place in the emerging junk market? No thanks. Let Samsung, LG, Xiaomi, and whatever other Chinese and/or Korean manufacturers want to, duke it out for king of the cheap junk handsets.
    Fit24 likes this.
    11-15-2013 03:01 PM
  11. SeanHRCC's Avatar
    I'm sorry if this is a dumb question, but what is Blizzard?





    Sent from my Lumia 900 using Tapatalk
    Makers of World of Warcraft (and other console MMO games).

    As far as the original question...why wouldn't Apple be able to "stay high end only" (as you put it)? People aren't buying Apple products because they feel it's the top dog of the market, people are buying them because of preference, quality and service standards...truthfully, I don't even consider Apple's products to be "high end only". Do they command a premium? Sure! Just like a BMW or Mercedes would...and I guess in the comparative way you'd look at a BMW vs. a Kia, you could make the "high end" generalization...but the reality is, it's simply a preference, and these days, it's really not that much more than a comparable product from another manufacturer (a couple hundred bucks is really nothing).
    Laura Knotek likes this.
    11-15-2013 03:19 PM
  12. Ipheuria's Avatar
    I love Apple but I find that defending them by saying their stuff isn't more costly is just not reality. You can go to most places and buy a Windows laptop for anywhere from $400 - 900 and I'm not talking netbook. So when I'm giving friends and family advice I don't try to sell them on Apple. I give them an honest answer. Yes it is more expensive the cheapest laptop is going to start at around $1,000 for very basic specs. However there is so much that goes along with owning an Apple that make the purchase of more value than the laptop you get at BestBuy. The ability to call or go to an Apple store for a problem whether you bought it there or not, try that with a Toshiba or whatever you buy. The resale value holds up so much better because after paying $800 for a Windows laptop how much would you really expect to sell it for in a year or two? Now the same goes for the phones, they are expensive. Talking about the subsidized price means nothinig when you talk emerging markets because most people in that marking at looking at the cost unsubsidized. The problem is that the people on Wall St. or wherever pressuring Apple to make a cheap iPhone while thinking about money are not thinking long term. There could actually be a potentially earning less money even with gaining more market share, where have I heard that before? There is no way Apple could make a cheap iPhone and only sell it in other countries people in NA would cry bloody murder and sue if they can. Now if that cheap iPhone is sold in North America sure some parents will buy it for their kids, some feature phone users will upgrade to it. The problem is people who would have upgraded to a 6 or 6s will also just get the cheaper one. Cheap also means cheap internals so then you're looking at increased returns, warranty swaps, genius bar appointments. It is just not needed in North America, what the people mean when they are saying cheap iPhone is actually an iPhone just at a cheaper price. Why would Apple lower the price on the iPhones when they have always sold more than the previous model? Obviously people are buying them so what happens when they sell it for cheaper and it does nothinig to the stock price? Really what do the analysts know about running a tech company? It's like a food critic telling a chef how to make the dishes on the menu.

    I will always maintain Google can afford to give Android away for free because what they really care about is more people using it. The more people use the services and search and the other stuff they make the real money from is their real concern. Other than Samsung are the other manufacturers making profit? So why would anyone look at this as what Apple needs to do? Sure I admit as an iPhone user I have noticed a shift and an increase in the number of people I notice with Android devices. What I also know is that The PC industry is really in trouble right now and Apple still doesn't have huge problems with Macs. So decades from now when the market is completely full of Android devices of all types and they are dirt cheap and the manufacturers can barely make any profit from it and Apple is still selling their devices at a profite I'm not so sure people will look at it as a lost oppurtunity.
    Laura Knotek and Fit24 like this.
    11-15-2013 03:38 PM
  13. kch50428's Avatar
    I will always maintain Google can afford to give Android away for free because what they really care about is more people using it.
    Actually, Google gives away Android because it's a captive audience for advertising, and a source to mine resellable data on user behaviors... Google's bread and butter.
    Fausty82 and Laura Knotek like this.
    11-15-2013 03:45 PM
  14. Algus's Avatar
    It doesn't necessarily have to be a budget-conscious laptop. Maybe something that's mid-priced ($700 range like a Mac Mini) and decent (and possible to upgrade components on your own), and heck, I'd consider getting one as a second laptop.
    I'm not really looking for a sub $1000 dollar notebook. I'd just like a 15.6" notebook that doesn't cost $2,000

    Sent from my Galaxy Note 3 using Tapatalk 4
    11-15-2013 05:49 PM
  15. jmr1015's Avatar
    I'm not really looking for a sub $1000 dollar notebook. I'd just like a 15.6" notebook that doesn't cost $2,000

    Sent from my Galaxy Note 3 using Tapatalk 4
    You can get a Certified Refurb, direct from Apple, with a 1-year warranty, for far less than $2,000
    11-15-2013 05:57 PM
  16. Metro1088's Avatar
    I think Apple should stay at the high end. Google can afford to release a cheap phone with zero profit because they profit from services. Apple doesn't do that. It's business is selling hardware at a profit. Going down in prices would only harm good business. Right now it is so difficult to have a good business with payed apps on the app store. Imagine what would happen if the iPhone is bought by people who would otherwise buy a cheap Lumia or a cheap galaxy and never even use the browser. It will be candy crush and cheap ad-infested apps.

    People who buy cheap phones don't usually use them very much or enjoy them. Apple has never been after that kind of market and I don't think it should ever try to. Tim Cook did a nice interview about this around the time the iPhone got released this year. He said he doesn't want to sell an iPad to someone who just wants to make their kid shut up. I can't agree more.
    11-15-2013 07:56 PM
  17. Laura Knotek's Avatar
    Makers of World of Warcraft (and other console MMO games).

    As far as the original question...why wouldn't Apple be able to "stay high end only" (as you put it)? People aren't buying Apple products because they feel it's the top dog of the market, people are buying them because of preference, quality and service standards...truthfully, I don't even consider Apple's products to be "high end only". Do they command a premium? Sure! Just like a BMW or Mercedes would...and I guess in the comparative way you'd look at a BMW vs. a Kia, you could make the "high end" generalization...but the reality is, it's simply a preference, and these days, it's really not that much more than a comparable product from another manufacturer (a couple hundred bucks is really nothing).



    Thanks! I'm not a gamer, so I don't know anything about game companies.





    Sent from my Lumia 900 using Tapatalk
    11-15-2013 08:20 PM
  18. Trees's Avatar
    I think market share matters. If a company has a diminishing pool into which a product can be sold, then to sustain revenue needed to fuel R&D and other operating and capital expenses; an increase in price is likely required to bring the next product iteration to market. In parallel, diminishing market share can morph into decreasing consumer awareness and interest; which in turn could be a catalyst for decreasing revenue and more difficult business decisions.

    I realize this is a simplified scenario, however, something to consider.
    Laura Knotek likes this.
    11-15-2013 08:43 PM
  19. Fit24's Avatar
    I love Apple but I find that defending them by saying their stuff isn't more costly is just not reality. You can go to most places and buy a Windows laptop for anywhere from $400 - 900 and I'm not talking netbook. So when I'm giving friends and family advice I don't try to sell them on Apple. I give them an honest answer. Yes it is more expensive the cheapest laptop is going to start at around $1,000 for very basic specs. However there is so much that goes along with owning an Apple that make the purchase of more value than the laptop you get at BestBuy. The ability to call or go to an Apple store for a problem whether you bought it there or not, try that with a Toshiba or whatever you buy. The resale value holds up so much better because after paying $800 for a Windows laptop how much would you really expect to sell it for in a year or two? Now the same goes for the phones, they are expensive. Talking about the subsidized price means nothinig when you talk emerging markets because most people in that marking at looking at the cost unsubsidized. The problem is that the people on Wall St. or wherever pressuring Apple to make a cheap iPhone while thinking about money are not thinking long term. There could actually be a potentially earning less money even with gaining more market share, where have I heard that before? There is no way Apple could make a cheap iPhone and only sell it in other countries people in NA would cry bloody murder and sue if they can. Now if that cheap iPhone is sold in North America sure some parents will buy it for their kids, some feature phone users will upgrade to it. The problem is people who would have upgraded to a 6 or 6s will also just get the cheaper one. Cheap also means cheap internals so then you're looking at increased returns, warranty swaps, genius bar appointments. It is just not needed in North America, what the people mean when they are saying cheap iPhone is actually an iPhone just at a cheaper price. Why would Apple lower the price on the iPhones when they have always sold more than the previous model? Obviously people are buying them so what happens when they sell it for cheaper and it does nothinig to the stock price? Really what do the analysts know about running a tech company? It's like a food critic telling a chef how to make the dishes on the menu.

    I will always maintain Google can afford to give Android away for free because what they really care about is more people using it. The more people use the services and search and the other stuff they make the real money from is their real concern. Other than Samsung are the other manufacturers making profit? So why would anyone look at this as what Apple needs to do? Sure I admit as an iPhone user I have noticed a shift and an increase in the number of people I notice with Android devices. What I also know is that The PC industry is really in trouble right now and Apple still doesn't have huge problems with Macs. So decades from now when the market is completely full of Android devices of all types and they are dirt cheap and the manufacturers can barely make any profit from it and Apple is still selling their devices at a profite I'm not so sure people will look at it as a lost oppurtunity.
    Well said Ipheuria! IMO a cheaper device is not always cost effective and it doesn't always make good business sense.
    Laura Knotek and Ipheuria like this.
    11-15-2013 09:19 PM
  20. jmr1015's Avatar
    I think market share matters. If a company has a diminishing pool into which a product can be sold, then to sustain revenue needed to fuel R&D and other operating and capital expenses; an increase in price is likely required to bring the next product iteration to market. In parallel, diminishing market share can morph into decreasing consumer awareness and interest; which in turn could be a catalyst for decreasing revenue and more difficult business decisions.

    I realize this is a simplified scenario, however, something to consider.
    But this hardly applies to Apple. Apple's "loss" of market share has nothing to do with decreasing sales. It is simply the bottom end of the market ballooning. Apple's sales continue to increase year over year... The overall market is just getting larger and larger, which makes the segment Apple sells to, appear to be smaller and smaller, when in reality, it too, is growing.
    Ipheuria likes this.
    11-15-2013 09:26 PM
  21. Fit24's Avatar
    high-end:

    Free Online Dictionary ... "Appealing to sophisticated and discerning customers."

    Merriam-Webster Online ... "higher in price and of better quality than most others."

    IMO Apple tends to focus on making great products of high quality and great value. They should continue to make "high-end" products. Why mess with success?
    11-15-2013 09:57 PM
  22. Ujjwal Agarwal's Avatar
    whatever apple do they will always stay in the limelight
    the fantastic combination of software and hardware is what keeps apple out of the league!
    11-15-2013 10:49 PM
  23. cckgz4's Avatar
    Can Apple afford to stay high-end only?

    The Apple is "high end only" is a trite meme.
    How? Their lowest spec'd tablet and phone has premium price tags.
    Laura Knotek likes this.
    11-16-2013 12:15 AM
  24. abazigal's Avatar
    To me, the issue is that Apple is currently using hardware pricing to subsidise software.

    For example, Apple Maps doesn't earn them a cent in revenue, unlike Google Maps. So the costs of maintaining it is indirectly factored into the initial asking price of any IOS device you pay. IOS updates (and possibly future OSX updates as well), but a lot of time and money has clearly been spent on improving them every year. Same goes for other services like Siri and iCloud.

    Selling more devices at cheaper prices would defeat the purpose if it not only earns them less revenue, but also cannibalises sales of more expensive alternatives. I think for the moment at least, Apple can only remain profitable by catering to the higher-end section of the market.
    11-16-2013 06:24 AM
  25. Not Quite Right's Avatar
    Can Apple afford to stay high-end only?
    Yup ... that business model has severed Mercedes Benz well for how many years?
    Ipheuria likes this.
    11-16-2013 10:02 AM
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