If there are commonalities among Apple’s new product launches for the year they are on my list. First, everything launched is lustworthy. Even the entry-level iPhone XR tops all previous second-tier iPhone models. iPad Pro? Lust. Mac mini? Lust. MacBook Air? Lust. Watch Series 4? More than lust.
Second, Apple raised prices everywhere. iPhones. Mac mini. MacBook Air. Watch. Samsung, Microsoft, Google, Dell, HP, Lenovo, and the Chinese gadget knock-off makers should thank Apple for raising prices.
There may be hundreds of Android smartphone makers around the world but the only two technology companies to make any real money are Apple (about 65-percent of all smartphone industry revenue, and more than 80-percent of the industry’s profits), and Samsung. Every other manufacturer picks up crumbs relative to Apple and Samsung’s take.
The same thing holds true in the personal computer side of the fence. Apple’s Mac line, shortchanged as it has been in recent years, is said to take home nearly half of the entire PC industry’s profits. The iPad outsells Dell, HP, Lenovo, Acer, Asus, and Windows PC and Chromebook makers.
Apple is the umbrella technology company that gives competitors enough room to breath, but not sufficient room to enter into the premium end of the product segment where all the profits live.
Competitors should thank Apple for raising prices because it gives them room to raise prices; or, in the alternative, not to lower prices because those manufacturers compete with each other far more than compete against Apple.
As an example, Apple sold over 200-million iPhone models last year. Samsung sold more but fewer in the premium model range, which is where higher revenue and profits lie. What about Google’s highly acclaimed Pixel line? Analysts point out that Google didn’t sell more than a few million since the Pixel 2 was launched a year ago.
Clearly, smartphones are a hobby for Google and they are not serious about competing with Apple or Samsung. Smartphones have reached something of a plateau of acceptable quality; they run apps, they take videos and photos, they play games. All of them do that. Yet, Apple has managed to sell a similar number of iPhones each year, and raise the average selling price to rake in even more profits.
Samsung comes in at a distant second place. Everyone else is tied for third place. Or, tied for last place.
The entire industry should bow before Apple and say, “Thank you, Apple, for raising prices so we can stay in business.