Linked by Thom Holwerda on Fri 28th Oct 2011 14:49 UTC
PDAs, Cellphones, Wireless Remember when Apple surpassed Nokia to become the world's best-selling smartphone manufacturer? Well, Apple only had one quarter to enjoy this title, since Samsung just soared past them by quadrupling its smartphone shipments, making Samsung the largest smartphone manufacturer in the world. Update: As was noted in the comments, Apple also uses shipments - they just call them sales. Straight from their SEC filing.
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RE[2]: deja vu all opver again
by unclefester on Sat 29th Oct 2011 23:24 UTC in reply to "RE: deja vu all opver again"
unclefester
Member since:
2007-01-13

There is a saying in investment circles.

Past performance is no guarantee of future earnings.

Within five years time.

a) all phones will be smartphones (unlocked smartphones currently cost as little as $50 in China)

b) quality tablets will be incredibly cheap (less than $100). The Chinese are already selling unlocked 10" tablets with capacitative touchscreens for $200. That price will drop to $150 within a matter of months,

C) per unit profit margins will be tiny ($5-10).

So how is Apple going to mega profitable when they are hundreds of much cheaper products competing covering every single market segment?

This is how the PC almost killed Apple back in the mid 1990s.

Reply Parent Score: 4

kristoph Member since:
2006-01-01

This is how the PC almost killed Apple back in the mid 1990s.


Yep, and look how that turned out. (Hint: Apple is worth more then Microsoft, Dell, HP, etc.)

There will always be a market for premium products. I could drive a very nice USD 20k car but I choose to drive a USD 80k car as do millions of consumers throughout the world.

Reply Parent Score: 1

unclefester Member since:
2007-01-13

Yep, and look how that turned out. (Hint: Apple is worth more then Microsoft, Dell, HP, etc.)


You have absolutely no idea how businesses are valued. They are only worth a multiple of their latest earnings. A couple of bad quarters and the value of Apple will plummet.

There will always be a market for premium products. I could drive a very nice USD 20k car but I choose to drive a USD 80k car as do millions of consumers throughout the world.


Don't believe the marketing hype. There is absolutely nothing "premium" about Apple products. They are all mass produced commodity products assembled in Chinese factories.

Car analogies are totally absurd:

- luxury cars are exclusive and expensive. iPhones, iPads and iPads are are relatively cheap mass produced electronics.

- car technology improves at a glacial rate compared with electronics. A 20 year old Mercedes has most of the features of a new Mercedes. A 20 year old mobile phone or computer is a doorstop.

- No luxury car maker builds millions of identical cars each year in a Chinese factory.

- No luxury car engine dies after two years. No luxury car is worthless after 3-4 years.

Reply Parent Score: 4

RE[4]: deja vu all opver again
by zima on Fri 4th Nov 2011 20:08 in reply to "RE[3]: deja vu all opver again"
zima Member since:
2005-07-06

Yep, and look how that turned out. (Hint: Apple is worth more then Microsoft, Dell, HP, etc.)
There will always be a market for premium products. I could drive a very nice USD 20k car but I choose to drive a USD 80k car as do millions of consumers throughout the world.

Valuations (such a fleeting thing) and car brands don't work as you think...

...but OK, lets go with your car analogy!

Essentially, you inadvertently state, yourself, that Apple products are primarily... positional or even veblen goods! That's what luxury car brands are! (luxury items, in general)

But it's even more that that. Look around you - virtually all luxury car manufacturers are, nowadays, just brands of more versatile "volk" manufacturers; the resources of the latter push innovation and technology forward.
Luxury brands remaining on their own are typically just about niche, irrelevant, "nostalgia-based" offers.

So, I guess, you are arguing that, quite soon (considering this field is much more volatile, evolving much faster than automotive one - you can just look at Apple history, if you have any doubts about that), Apple will be up for grabs by the likes of Samsung...


There's also how, IMHO a bit more than 10 years ago, cars became quite universally "good enough" / now it's largely just about fillers (see at the irrational SUV craze if you any doubts about that).
Sure there's lots of place for improvement in propulsion tech, but it will hardly impact the experience (autonomous cars might do that*); plus the innovation is largely being done and implemented by "volk" industrial powerhouses, anyway (*same; and also by some Apple competitors who are about cooperation with established car conglomerates).
Heck, a "hot" or even "warm hatch" of today is quite often a better race car than many sports cars of 3 decades ago (particularly when any turns are involved, when it comes to handling - people greatly under-appreciate how massively it improved over the last few decades)


BTW, I loved how Porsche almost-kinda-tried a takeover of Volkswagen - but then realized to their horror how their financial valuations and assets are worth much less than previously imagined; essentially, in practise (if not strictly on paper) led themselves to takeover by VW.

Edited 2011-11-04 20:11 UTC

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE[3]: deja vu all opver again
by bowkota on Sun 30th Oct 2011 10:45 in reply to "RE[2]: deja vu all opver again"
bowkota Member since:
2011-10-12

There is a saying in investment circles.

Past performance is no guarantee of future earnings.

Within five years time.

a) all phones will be smartphones (unlocked smartphones currently cost as little as $50 in China)

b) quality tablets will be incredibly cheap (less than $100). The Chinese are already selling unlocked 10" tablets with capacitative touchscreens for $200. That price will drop to $150 within a matter of months,

C) per unit profit margins will be tiny ($5-10).

So how is Apple going to mega profitable when they are hundreds of much cheaper products competing covering every single market segment?

This is how the PC almost killed Apple back in the mid 1990s.


Smartphones for $50 and tablets for €200 ?
Don't think so...
You do realise that the push is to make these devices as powerful as possible. Better screen, better cpu, more ram, better battery life, better camera. Add it up and that means that they're not going to approach $200 anytime soon, not the ones that are selling's in big numbers anyways.

Take a look at the music player market evolved these past 10 years and you'll get the idea.

Reply Parent Score: 0

unclefester Member since:
2007-01-13

Smartphones for $50 and tablets for €200 ?
Don't think so...


They are already available at these prices in China.

eg Zenithink ZT-280 C91 10.2" Android 2.2 Tablet PC Capacitive Touch Screen CORTEX A9 1GHz 512MB DDR2 WIFI G-senor Camera (USD229 shipped).

The $50 tablet is totally plausible within five years.

You do realise that the push is to make these devices as powerful as possible. Better screen, better cpu, more ram, better battery life, better camera. Add it up and that means that they're not going to approach $200 anytime soon, not the ones that are selling's in big numbers anyways.


The push for higher specs is coming from the phone marketing departments not the public. More specs equals bigger margins.

Current smartphones are already more than capable of performing the tasks required by 99% of buyers.

The reality:
higher resolution screens are pointless.
bigger screens are impractical.
you can't take decent photos with a fixed (phone) lens.
battery aren't improving.
phones can't get much thinner.

My Ericsson T18s phone cost AUD1200 in 1999 (equivalent to around AUD2000 now). I can buy an unlocked Nokia for AUD29 that is vastly better. A better phone for 1/65th the price!

Reply Parent Score: 4