The September Quarter Outcome: Apple Prepares For Battle

  • Posted: 19 October 2010 12:40 PM #16

    What purpose does it serve to tell the world that your competitors are wrong.

    It was also a gauntlet to manufacturers, an attempt to goad them into wasting time producing a product that won’t be profitable for them. The 7” comments could be FUD of his own, of course. It’s business; he gets to lie and use misdirection if he wants.

    But on the issue of iPad pricing, he left no doubt that Apple doesn’t intent to allow anyone to put out better hardware at the same price point. Which is very different from Apple’s Mac position.

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  • Posted: 19 October 2010 12:40 PM #17

    Roman - 19 October 2010 02:32 PM

    In game theory, one of the simplest tactics is tit for tat.

    I love game theory.

         
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    Posted: 19 October 2010 01:10 PM #18

    Uh, FalKirk…I “borrowed” the reframing term from you.  And the changing the game part is hardly mind-blowing new thought.  You give me far too much credit.  Most AFBers understand this and use these concepts frequently.  I was merely in rant mode and looking to repeat some key Apple themes.

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  • Posted: 19 October 2010 01:37 PM #19

    Mav - 19 October 2010 04:10 PM

    Uh, FalKirk…I “borrowed” the reframing term from you.  And the changing the game part is hardly mind-blowing new thought.  You give me far too much credit.  Most AFBers understand this and use these concepts frequently.  I was merely in rant mode and looking to repeat some key Apple themes.

    Well, I liked the way you put it and sometimes the way something’s said is as important as what is being said.

         
  • Posted: 19 October 2010 01:41 PM #20

    FalKirk - 19 October 2010 04:56 AM

    I found Steve Jobs’ prepared remarks to be the most interesting part of the earnings call first, because he went out of his way to make them, and second, because of the content of his remarks. Here is my rough and tumble translation of what Steve Jobs said or what he wanted us to take away.

    1) RIM, you’re through. We just passed you in unit sales and with your lack of expertise in software, you’ve got no chance of catching us. Ever.

    2) Google, you’re a blankety-blank lier. You say you have 200,000 activations a day? Well we have 275,000 iOS activations a day. And why aren’t you releasing your unit sales so we could be talking about actual numbers instead of these fricking activation numbers?

    3) Google: You say open. We say fragmented. You say closed. We say integrated. You say open always wins. We say Bull….

    Open doesn’t always beat closed, but integrated always beats fragmented. And we’re coming after your fragmented ass.

    4) Tablet competitors? What tablet competitors?

    They don’t exist. And when they do exist, they’ll be too small and too expensive. And when they finally come to their senses and put out a properly sized tablet, we will crush them into dust.

    It’s gonna be fun.

    Well-summarised. 

    SJ’s scripted comments, addressed to multiple audiences, were a study in psychological warfare.

    @Dawntreader: Great article in Post. Looking forward to the follow-on.

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  • Posted: 19 October 2010 02:21 PM #21

    SJ was defining the battle space, and establishing some facts.

    One is that open vs. closed is the wrong comparison. Apple’s not going to let competitors beat it over the head with that one any more

    A second is that 7” tablet is “cheap”, and you (customer) won’t be happy with it. He’s establishing the position that 10” (approx) is the “standard” size for a tablet device. Smaller ones are rinky-dink.

    They have an event tomorrow but that wouldn’t be the right forum for this. Doing it on a webcast was about right - you don’t waste your publicity but you do get decent exposure to the message. The target was the press, not users.

         
  • Posted: 19 October 2010 04:53 PM #22

    DawnTreader - 19 October 2010 04:01 AM

    My latest missive at Eventide.

    Snippet: It’s clear from his comments Mr. Jobs and Apple are bracing for battle with Google for supremacy in the smartphone market and the emerging market for tablet devices.

    I enjoyed listening to and documenting the litany of quarterly numbers put forward by members of Apple’s executive team. But it was the remarks by Mr. Jobs that put Apple’s FY 2011 mission and goals on the table for the world to see and hear.

    The original topic post back for page 2 of the topic.

         
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    Posted: 19 October 2010 05:45 PM #23

    DawnTreader - 19 October 2010 07:53 PM
    DawnTreader - 19 October 2010 04:01 AM

    My latest missive at Eventide.

    Snippet: It’s clear from his comments Mr. Jobs and Apple are bracing for battle with Google for supremacy in the smartphone market and the emerging market for tablet devices.

    I enjoyed listening to and documenting the litany of quarterly numbers put forward by members of Apple’s executive team. But it was the remarks by Mr. Jobs that put Apple’s FY 2011 mission and goals on the table for the world to see and hear.

    The original topic post back for page 2 of the topic.

    I will be interested to see if Android provides any sales figures?  Activations are a metric, but the numbers when you average across days leaves lots of interpretation.  I thought SJ did a nice job of outlining his/Apple’s position.  It is obvious that he is willing to compare iOS performance against Android, and hardware device sales against any manufacture.  I will be interested to see if WM 7 has any impact on Android market share growth since the same manufactures are building the same device with two different OSes. It will at least show if their is a ground swell in regard to Android or it was just a target of opportunity.  I was happy to see Apple gaining ground on RIMM and look forward to seeing the side by side comparison.  Apple is obviously making some headway in the enterprise and it appears to be at the expense of RIMM, if this qtr is any indication.

         
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    Posted: 19 October 2010 06:04 PM #24

    And now RIMM shoots back…sort of
    http://tech.fortune.cnn.com/category/apple-2-0/

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  • Posted: 19 October 2010 08:23 PM #25

    Red shirted ensign - 19 October 2010 09:04 PM

    And now RIMM shoots back…sort of
    http://tech.fortune.cnn.com/category/apple-2-0/

    Actually, I think that was a surprisingly strong response. If I can break it down:

    1) Gratuitous insults: “(we) live outside the reality distortion field”, “customers are getting tired of being told what to think by Apple”, “even people inside the distortion field will begin to resent being told half a story”.

    2) 7” tablets are going to be big

    3) Adobe Flash is the real internet

    4) Closed is good for Apple, but not for developers and customers

    5) Our numbers are better than you reported

    Kinda feisty, I thought.

         
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    Posted: 19 October 2010 08:45 PM #26

    FalKirk - 19 October 2010 11:23 PM
    Red shirted ensign - 19 October 2010 09:04 PM

    And now RIMM shoots back…sort of
    http://tech.fortune.cnn.com/category/apple-2-0/

    Actually, I think that was a surprisingly strong response. If I can break it down:

    1) Gratuitous insults: “(we) live outside the reality distortion field”, “customers are getting tired of being told what to think by Apple”, “even people inside the distortion field will begin to resent being told half a story”.

    2) 7” tablets are going to be big

    3) Adobe Flash is the real internet

    4) Closed is good for Apple, but not for developers and customers

    5) Our numbers are better than you reported

    Kinda feisty, I thought.

     

    Indeed, it was. When SJ went postal yesterday on the call I thought it was a mistake, but now I see that he drew a nice line in the sand and basically told google and Rimm to put up or shut up.  Both have “put up” pretty quickly and with some stridency of their own.

    I like it…all of it. Fight for the future of mobile computing…3 way race to the future ( sorry nokia and Microsoft)

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    Posted: 19 October 2010 08:46 PM #27

    FalKirk - 19 October 2010 11:23 PM
    Red shirted ensign - 19 October 2010 09:04 PM

    And now RIMM shoots back…sort of
    http://tech.fortune.cnn.com/category/apple-2-0/

    Actually, I think that was a surprisingly strong response. If I can break it down:

    1) Gratuitous insults: “(we) live outside the reality distortion field”, “customers are getting tired of being told what to think by Apple”, “even people inside the distortion field will begin to resent being told half a story”.

    2) 7” tablets are going to be big

    3) Adobe Flash is the real internet

    4) Closed is good for Apple, but not for developers and customers

    5) Our numbers are better than you reported

    Kinda feisty, I thought.

    Can you tell me what part of RIMM is open?  Like there server or there messaging system.  Oh yes they use a webkit browser which is open source.  What you mean Apple provided most of the dollars supporting webkit, how can Apple support webkit, it’s not closed and doesn’t support the closed application store.  If you develop for the RIMM app store it’s open because we have no standards except we don’t want fart apps and you can’t charge 99c, because we won’t sell your 99c app.

    I love the your numbers are better, put up or shut up.  We guided to 13.8M, so get out your calculator and add July, Aug & Sep and give us the number or STFU.  We would hate to argue with real facts so when are numbers are close we will again say it is not a direct compare since are qtrs are different. 

    The table rant is extra special, as RIMM does a slide show demo of a product they may release sometime in 2011 and then when SJ calls them on the smokescreen they call it the reality distortion field.  I translate they have no business building a table, but if Apple can do it we will do it better, trust us.  Where is the software for their new OS coming from vs 35,000 apps?

         
  • Posted: 19 October 2010 09:19 PM #28

    FalKirk - 19 October 2010 11:23 PM

    2) 7” tablets are going to be big

    I hadn’t really thought about this, but Steve really put his neck on the line yesterday. He flat out said that 7” tablets were no good. Naturally, RIM, Android and a bunch of pundits have called him on this. If 7” tablets prove to be a big success, then Jobs will look pretty foolish and lose considerable credibility.

    I’m guessing Jobs wouldn’t have made such a bold public predication if Apple hadn’t thoroughly explored the 7” tablet and decided that it had few redeeming features. He must feel very, very certain that 7” tablets are a disaster waiting to happen if he called them “Dead On Arrival”. If you have faith in Jobs - and he’s been right a lot more than he’s been wrong - then the competition might be walking into a buzz saw.

         
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    Posted: 19 October 2010 09:33 PM #29

    His credibility is determined more by Apple’s results.  The more iPads sold, the more credible he is.

    Smaller-scale tablet computing has been kinda-tried already by various PMP makers such as Archos…to…hm…what effect?  Hard to tell, iPod touch has taken all the oxygen out of the pocket computing market too.  5” screen form factors haven’t set the world on fire, and I’m just not sure how a measly 2” in diagonal screen space will make much of a difference.  The major problem is the amount of real estate really does “settle for less” in terms of what the user can do.  Smartphone Plus or Tablet Minus?  The challenge is for the 7” tablets to establish themselves as the “right size” for the kinds of applications iPad already has.  Not to mention, use a Google-recommended OS…

    Not only that, competitors can’t even get the features right.  What on earth is the Galaxy Tab doing with a 3MP rear camera and 720x480 video recording?

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    Posted: 19 October 2010 09:38 PM #30

    vpndev - 19 October 2010 05:21 PM

    A second is that 7” tablet is “cheap”, and you (customer) won’t be happy with it. He’s establishing the position that 10” (approx) is the “standard” size for a tablet device. Smaller ones are rinky-dink.

    I thought Jobs’ point was 7” was too small for a tablet, unless you have tiny hands like a raccoon, and if you want something smaller than an iPad, that fits in a pocket, you get a phone, not a tablet.

    I know that Apple isn’t the market research type of company, but Jobs said this with such confidence, I have to believe they’ve done some significant informal testing with 7” prototypes, maybe just in-house. It was weird that he warned other companies that they were making a mistake. If they are, why tell them!

    Jobs also made an interesting point about fragmentation (which should have been clear when he killed the endless Mac models when he returned to Apple) He seems to like definitive gaps between products, making you choose, no increments in between major products (which is also good for wooing developers, so they can write to a single device, instead of 100 variations like Android). I read a great article on this strategy by Jobs several weeks ago but forgot who wrote it.

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