It's probable Apple will lose smartphone wars without Steve Jobs

Apple was guided by the mind that was Steve Jobs. Since his passing in 2011, there has been fleeting statements that they wouldn’t be able to carry on his vision, even though he was rumoured to have left not only a legacy, but a roadmap on how to take the company’s products forward.

Now Elon Musk, a serial entrepreneur, founder of Tesla and SpaceX, says that Apple will ultimately lose the smartphone market to Google; all because Steve Jobs is no longer at the helm. He was quoted, at a government sponsored roundtable in London, saying Apple will lose to Google in the smartphone market:

…because [Steve] Jobs is out of the picture.

To be fair, it’s not like Steve Jobs is taking a sabbatical, was fired, or left the post; the man died! No amount of rumoured 4 year plans or product roadmaps will bring his wealth of knowledge back to the fold. Musk went on to add:

It really makes a difference who runs the company. [Google CEO] Larry Page is quite good and probably in the long run will come out on top.

Musk isn’t the only person to voice their opinions (concerns?) over Apple’s current status in the market. Steve Wozniak, Apple co-founder, has expressed that he is worried Microsoft may be more innovative than Apple and that the Cupertino tech giant will eventually decline in the market due to a lack of innovation. Another analyst has said that Apple’s creativity is “sputtering.

Tim Cook, the man to take the Apple helm following Steve Job’s passing, has been branded a technology lightweight and has been criticised for his observable lack of leadership skills.

As popular as the iPhone and iOS is, Android holds a whopping 72.4% of the mobile device market share, as of Q3 2012.

Source: Toms Hardware | Image courtesy of Business Insider

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TheDogsBed said,

Android on my phone? Get some quality control in your App Store and I could be persuaded to at least dip my toe I suppose, but then I would lose the synergy I have with my iMac, etc.

App store quality control.

I really struggle finding any useful app in any of the app stores. (I have an ipod, android tablet and windows phone).

All of them have far too many pointless apps (do I really need 400 fart apps) and less than ideal search facilities to find the decent apps.

All I can say is that I never struggle to find good quality apps to do what I am looking for in the Apple App Store. However, I hated the Android store with every fibre of my being. Time after time the apps were buggy, poorly presented, rubbish. I just don't personally get the same low hit rate with the Apple App Store.

Chris Rollason said,

App store quality control.

I really struggle finding any useful app in any of the app stores. (I have an ipod, android tablet and windows phone).

All of them have far too many pointless apps (do I really need 400 fart apps) and less than ideal search facilities to find the decent apps.

Chris Rollason said,
App store quality control.

Yeah, it truly sucks having to 'search engine' an app category in your ecosystem to see if someone else had the time to evaluate the plethora of like apps just to find one that will meet your needs.

That's a lot of words used but I still have no idea what you just said!

deadonthefloor said,

Yeah, it truly sucks having to 'search engine' an app category in your ecosystem to see if someone else had the time to evaluate the plethora of like apps just to find one that will meet your needs.

singularity87 said,
I'm not sure they'd succeed in the long-term even with Steve Jobs.

Well this is the unanswerable question. More to the point is his everlasting roadmap will only be viable as long as 'the next big thing' doesn't catch Apple off guard.
If Steve could be with us today, he would at least be able to offer his insight in such an instance. Now we're left with the flounders in business suits trying to grasp the technology in a way only Steve could.

People want the iPhone-wannabees out there due to how cheaply made and cheaply priced they are. "good enough" is their motto. Everything is a tradeoff with Android devices. Cheap UI, Cheap hardware with non-recyclable plastic (not earth friendly like aluminum), and cheap OS. All a rip off because people don't want great (Apple) they want good enough (Android).

I know as I only have one crappy Android device left at my house.

NeoPogo said,
People want the iPhone-wannabees out there due to how cheaply made and cheaply priced they are. "good enough" is their motto. Everything is a tradeoff with Android devices. Cheap UI, Cheap hardware with non-recyclable plastic (not earth friendly like aluminum), and cheap OS. All a rip off because people don't want great (Apple) they want good enough (Android).

I know as I only have one crappy Android device left at my house.

I see you've fallen for the fallacy of an environmentally friendly phone. Pro-enlightenment for you: An environmentally phone is the one that was never made and therefore didn't use the metals, plastics and chemicals in the first place.

I like the cheap UI comment too. I guess you haven't noticed that the UI is getting a bit long in the tooth on iOS and that it isn't very consistent anyway. Not saying android is much better here. WP8 is at least trying something a bit different and it looks like Blackberry 10 might too.

As for trade offs - how is this related to android again? With apple you get precisely 3 models to pick from at any time. In all cases they have no expandable storage (you have to pay a small fortune to apple for more storage). No removable/replaceable battery. You get a completely locked down phone that you have to break into to modify anything. You also get to wait an eternity for standard features on other platforms. When did iphone users get LTE again? a few months ago? On other platforms it's been around for going on 2 years. At the very least on android there are so many phones that you can conceivably find one that fits just about any preference for screen size, storage, 3G or LTE, shape or colour.
etc etc

In the end, when some of you get a little older, you will see the only thing that matters is the green. Lots of you seem to not know how to do math.

Choose one:

A) Sell 1,000,000 phones at $250 with $100 profit margin?
B) Sell 500,000 phones at $500 with a $250 profit margin?

You fail if you choose answer A.

Well, I guess I might fail then. It is possible that you now have 1 Million sheep vs. .5 Million sheep to buy your apps (Which you make a good percentage of). Not to mention the new ones that will line up for the next one.

I believe they have this down to a science anyways. They sell the old ones at huge discounts to get people in the system. Then tout the features of the new ones once they are in. Even if they features are nothing really new to everyone else, it's still better than what your old IPhone has!

rippleman said,
In the end, when some of you get a little older, you will see the only thing that matters is the green. Lots of you seem to not know how to do math.

Choose one:

A) Sell 1,000,000 phones at $250 with $100 profit margin?
B) Sell 500,000 phones at $500 with a $250 profit margin?

You fail if you choose answer A.

rippleman said,
....

You fail to understand the market if hardware units are your only basis.


ARPU in Apples Store is > Android.

If that ever turned around for Android then answer A would be a more viable option.

rippleman said,
In the end, when some of you get a little older, you will see the only thing that matters is the green. Lots of you seem to not know how to do math.

Choose one:

A) Sell 1,000,000 phones at $250 with $100 profit margin?
B) Sell 500,000 phones at $500 with a $250 profit margin?

You fail if you choose answer A.

You actually fail if you chose anything but option A, as the attach rate for lower cost devices usually is higher, therefore leading to even greater profits. This is how the consoles market works, and is the correct option for long term profitability. I don't know a single company in the world that would rather have less users long term over a short term cash influx.

Meh Apple already lost to Google.

But Apple makes money out of hardware. As long as they keep 5-6% market share they'll make plenty of money. The market share of Android is shared between many manufacturer.

LaP said,
Meh Apple already lost to Google.

But Apple makes money out of hardware. As long as they keep 5-6% market share they'll make plenty of money. The market share of Android is shared between many manufacturer.

It's totally unrealistic to compare Apple to the other guys. All that matters is profit, and so long as Apple keeps making great products with amazing margins, they'll be making plenty of that. It's just unfair to compare a single phone to a million others, not to mention that a ton of those cheap Droid devices are basically just being sold as sub-par feature phones. I'd take a Kin over those any day

Yep

It's the same thing in the PC market.

People keep comparing the market share of Windows versus Mac OS.

It's not really relevant for Apple itself unless Apple start to sell Mac OS for PC.

What is relevant is the market share of Apple computer versus HP, Dell, ACER, etc ...

I'm sure if you compare the market share of the iPhone versus Samsung, LG, Nokia, HTC and such they are doing very well and will probably continue to do well for many years.

It is relevant when you consider the ecosystems as a whole. Regardless of how many OEMs Apple may be up against, they are probably more threatened by Google's Play Store which does put them 'mano a mano' against Google.

This is the type of article that makes google fans mess their pants as they dream about an Android monopoly. How awesome will that ubiquitous world be for you drones?

There's so much to say I can't bring myself to address it all. All I will say is there is nothing terribly wrong with Android over iOS phones.

The market is both better and worse for Android due to it's open nature. That's the nature of the beast: see Microsoft v Apple in third-party software support.

The hardware is not a problem either in Android as a whole. If you get a quality phone you're going to get a quality experience. It's actually both beneficial and unfortunate for Android that Apple doesn't have lower price point devices to compare with. Android is also much bigger conceptually than iOS with it being so versatile to not be locked down to just phones and tablets and with specific hardware.

Personally, I'm completely spoiled with the overwhelming amount of customization options in Android. The different ROMs featuring completely new sets of features is something I won't live without now that I have it. I have a Samsung Galaxy Note. I can change the DPI to any setting of my choice, I can switch between tablet and phone modes for specific apps, I can do any number of other things that iOS users can't even dream of because of a lack of options.

Like I said, there's nothing wrong with one or the other however for me, Android is the only choice.

Edited by Bryan R., Nov 26 2012, 7:41pm :

I really don't know what will become of Apple now that iCEO Jobs isn't involved anymore (Not like he could, unless he was a zombie) I think there isn't a much stress and chaos at Apple since Cook took over last year. They really need someone who can light a fire under the employees butts! So now their "A" Players hired under Steve Jobs seems to now turing into "C" Players. Something needs to happen or they'll be back at the beginning with ZERO market.

They were losing the smartphone war before Jobs died. The iPhone is a piece of crap. I had 2. They are just ok. The only reason they get so much hype is because of the fans and the retards who keep buying them. The limitations are ridiculous.

Android phones as a whole are doing better, not becaus eof just price as the fans want us to think, but because they are better at everything but games.

There are models with longer battery life, bigger screens, maos that work, avail on more carriers. Price isn't the issue. The GSIII cost the same as an iPhone on contact with the 32GB model only being $50 less. However even tho many new the iPhone 5 was coming, they still bought phones that cost MORe money liek the Droid Razr Maxx onb Verizon.

Apple is going to lose for the same reaosn they did with the Mac. They were blind by the fact they don't sell the phone to everyone. The 4S outsold the 5 beause it had a better price point. Price is an issue in many counties, especially Asian ones. When you have a monthly income that is equal to $150 US dollars, who do you afford an iPhone that requires a substancial downpayment to get or you must pay the whole phine cost upfront.

Apple already lost the smartphone market to Google Android. It's not because of Steve Jobs. Steve Job set the standard the only reason why Apple will stay at 2nd place is the close system of hardware and software of the iOS.

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