“It’s About Time Apple!”
Low Priced iPhone is What Apple Needs
The Wall Street Journal reported Apple is considering a low priced iPhone. I for one, think this is way over due. Apple busted out into the market with the iPhone back in 2007 with the invention of touch screen technology.
They dominated the market for years until Google came along, bought up the Android market, and started the playing in the mobile market.
The android market was Apple’s iPhone biggest competitor. They offered smart phones at half, and even as low as 20% (with a signed contract with a carrier) of that of Apple’s iPhone, which sold for $499 for 4GB and $599 for 8GB.
But it took a few years for Android to even become a player in the mobile market.
Five and half years later, Apple is now considering a low end model. In the third quarter 2012, Apple held only 14.6% of worldwide smartphone shipments, down from a peak of 23% in the fourth quarter of 2011 and the first quarter of 2012, according to IDC.
That’s a significant drop in less than nine months. Unfortunately, this is how big business usually operates, fixing the problem after it has occurred, instead of heading off the problem before it ever arises.
As a small business, you’re able to act quicker and thereby head off possible loss in market share, and not got locked into competing battles by just providing consumers what they want.
While Apple did this on the onset of the introduction to the iPhone and the smartphone revolution, the failed to make it affordable for the masses. Creating a huge gap in the marketplace.
Of course, Apple has always positioned itself this way, catering to higher end products, but in today’s economy, appealing to as many people as possible by offering different priced models is a much more sound business.
As marketer’s, we do this all the time. We find out what a particular segment of the public can afford, and design the product around that. There’s always going to be the higher end models with more bells and whistles, but unless you build a strong base of consumers who want your brand, you could find yourself slipping fast as your customer’s opt for the cheaper model they can find with your competitor.
The moral is, if you can, always have a low end, medium priced, and high end product to cater to different levels of income. This keeps your company from pigeonholing yourself into a market should it start to wane.
If you have a higher priced product, consider a scaled down version. If you have a low end priced product, consider adding more value to reach high end consumers.