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Old Jan 19, 2013, 06:57 AM   #1
Rogifan
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Is Apple's silence killing it right now?

Interesting blog post from music veteran Bob Lefsetz:

http://lefsetz.com/wordpress/index.p.../perception-3/

Quote:
But there’s no leader at Apple. Tim Cook is charisma-challenged. He starts to speak and credibility goes out the window. Phil Schiller has more gravitas, and Jonny Ive eclipses even him, but who’s really driving this car? Everybody knows Cook is an efficiency expert. Who’s the heart and soul of the enterprise, and where is it going?

The vacuum is such that way down the food chain, where the rubber meets the road, where people buy stuff, Apple is losing steam. It’s gone from trustworthy monolith to dying empire, all based on spin. People in the press and online saying Apple is toast with few facts to back it up.
I agree with pretty much everything he says. Apple needs to start controlling their narrative better and I don't know if Cook is the guy to do it. Someone else - maybe Schiller or Ive - needs to be the spokesperson for th company. Apple's stock is down 30% over the past few months in large part due to perception not reality. It's frustrating to see Apple just sit there and take it. Even if they have a blowout quarter, if their guidance is the least bit soft (and it will be because they always provide conservative guidance) the stock will get hammered. Because Q4 earnings is reality and these days it's all about perception with Apple, not reality.

What I find really reprehensible though are these negative rumors coming out right before earnings release when most companies go quiet because they don't want to do/say anything that could be perceived as as trying to influence the stock. Neither one of those rumors has any hard facts in them, they were based on unnamed sources and conclusions were drawn that likely had not basis in fact. And they obviously knew that a week before earnings release Apple wasn't going to comment. I don't think it's a coincidence that AAPL ended Friday at $500. Somebody's making a lot of money off of the Apple FUD going around right now.
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Old Jan 19, 2013, 07:19 AM   #2
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I doubt Apple feels the need to say anything, and they assume the profits they make on iPhones, iPads, Macs, etc speak for themselves.
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Old Jan 19, 2013, 07:42 AM   #3
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I doubt Apple feels the need to say anything, and they assume the profits they make on iPhones, iPads, Macs, etc speak for themselves.
Yeah their approach is to let the numbers speak for themselves but we get numbers once a quarter, the FUD happens daily. Of course Apple can't respond to all of it, but at some point perception becomes reality when they respond to none of it.
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Old Jan 19, 2013, 10:24 AM   #4
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I doubt Mr Average cares much about who is the heart and soul of Apple when he is in the phone or computer shop. All Apple need to do is make sure its their product Mr Average chooses.
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Old Jan 19, 2013, 10:33 AM   #5
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And Al Gore buys stock at $7 a share....

http://finance.yahoo.com/news/al-gor...164510966.html
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Old Jan 19, 2013, 10:34 AM   #6
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Originally Posted by roadbloc View Post
I doubt Mr Average cares much about who is the heart and soul of Apple when he is in the phone or computer shop. All Apple need to do is make sure it their product Mr Average chooses.
Agreed. Joe Average doesn't read tech blogs or forums either.
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Old Jan 19, 2013, 10:56 AM   #7
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When it comes to techy charisma, Cook does not equal Jobs.
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Old Jan 19, 2013, 12:06 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by Rogifan View Post
Yeah their approach is to let the numbers speak for themselves but we get numbers once a quarter, the FUD happens daily. Of course Apple can't respond to all of it, but at some point perception becomes reality when they respond to none of it.
Nobody gives a **** what some random hack blogger writes on his website.

They're the largest company in the world by market capitalization, worth nearly $475 billion. They're doing fine.
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Old Jan 19, 2013, 12:13 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by Rogifan View Post
Yeah their approach is to let the numbers speak for themselves but we get numbers once a quarter, the FUD happens daily. Of course Apple can't respond to all of it, but at some point perception becomes reality when they respond to none of it.
Do you expect Apple to daily respond and refute the ramblings of uninformed people on the internet?
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Old Jan 19, 2013, 12:29 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by ucfgrad93 View Post
Do you expect Apple to daily respond and refute the ramblings of uninformed people on the internet?
Where did I say that?

----------

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Originally Posted by zioxide View Post
Nobody gives a **** what some random hack blogger writes on his website.

They're the largest company in the world by market capitalization, worth nearly $475 billion. They're doing fine.
Might be some random blogger but I thought what he had to say was interesting. I guess we'll see next week if a really good quarter changes current perception but somehow I doubt it will.
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Old Jan 19, 2013, 05:48 PM   #11
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The entire blog post is silly.

First, Apple doesn't comment on its stock price. It just doesn't. And it certainly isn't going to do it right before an earnings report.

Second, company executives aren't going to pre-announce revenues or earnings before the earnings reporting date. And that's really the only thing they could do: give evidence that all the doom-and-gloomers are wrong. They aren't going to drop hints about it, either.

Third, the post is all about perception and spin, presented using (you guessed it) nothing but spin. From just the quoted paragraphs: "No leader", "charisma-challenged", "dying empire", blah blah blah.

For an alternative spin, but one with links to other articles, see Daring Fireball, and find the word "silence" on the page. Gruber's posted links, pull quotes, and comments on multiple articles about the possibilities of stock-price manipulation. I'm not saying I'm convinced by it, but at least it's presented more convincingly than a bunch of hand-wringing histrionics.
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Old Jan 19, 2013, 11:28 PM   #12
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The stock dropped over $200 since the iPhone 5. People are obviously not confident about the state of the company right now. Yes, there are people out there manipulating the stock, but it should have recovered by now. After the management shakeup and nobody in the company to really take on the image of Apple, people aren't sure that a post-Jobs Apple can survive.

This is the ugly truth now. 2013 is the definitive year. Unfortunately, if Apple can't step up to the plate with new innovative ideas and fix its inconsistencies in software, it's going to be a rough road ahead. The company is focusing on specs and market share right now. These are areas where it can't compete, and this is the exact opposite of the attitude Apple used to have. I miss Steve Jobs.
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Old Jan 20, 2013, 01:29 AM   #13
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Agreed with djtech42. There is still always the risk of Apple imploding if they don't come up with innovative new products before 2014. If they don't manage that I think Tim Cooke will be challenged from competitors who want to be in charge. From then on it's all gonna be very nasty.
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Old Jan 20, 2013, 01:41 AM   #14
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Originally Posted by zioxide View Post
Nobody gives a **** what some random hack blogger writes on his website.

They're the largest company in the world by market capitalization, worth nearly $475 billion. They're doing fine.
I don't think they are doing fine. I don't know what the hell is wrong with Apple stock. It was 700 bucks per share and now it is 500 bucks. Why investors do not invest in Apple anymore? They don't trust Cook?
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Old Jan 20, 2013, 01:45 AM   #15
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The people that know what's going on are saying nothing.

The people that don't know are woofing it up.


Those that think this is a make it or break year simple have no understanding of what decline truly looks like.

I suggest looking at Microsoft. The only success they've had in recent years is the Xbox. The degradation of a a company takes time and there must be a reversal of fortune that is sustained (i.e MSFT failing to craft a decent mobile platform)

Apple is not there yet. iOS still has a commanding lead in mobile platform in revenue/profits and numerical numbers.

I'll start to get worried when they actually start selling less hardware and leave the Town Criers to spout their tripe to more willing ears.
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Old Jan 20, 2013, 01:52 AM   #16
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There are problems I think it might be it.
Apple Map
Big channge in management. Many executive managers are out.
Apple supply chain.
Apple quality control.
Who is leading the company?
What the next excitement of next Apple product after Apple TV?
Who is visionary leadet at Apple right now?
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Old Jan 20, 2013, 06:01 AM   #17
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Originally Posted by NOV View Post
Agreed with djtech42. There is still always the risk of Apple imploding if they don't come up with innovative new products before 2014. If they don't manage that I think Tim Cooke will be challenged from competitors who want to be in charge. From then on it's all gonna be very nasty.
There's that overused word innovation again. That's some of the BS spin Apple allows to hang out there. Explain all this innovation others are doing that Apple isn't. People pick and chose what they want to call innovative. A phone with a bigger screen is innovative but packing all this technology into something that's super thin and light apparently isn't. That's just iterative. The tech press dinged the iPhone 5 for looking too much like the 4, yet raved about the Lumia 920 design even though it looks just like the N90 and Lumia 900. Why the double standard?

Thumb resize.
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Old Jan 20, 2013, 06:21 AM   #18
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I don't think they are doing fine. I don't know what the hell is wrong with Apple stock. It was 700 bucks per share and now it is 500 bucks. Why investors do not invest in Apple anymore? They don't trust Cook?
FUD pure and simple.

Apple should have Schiller and Ive be the spokespeople for the company. Schiller is better on stage than Cook is, and Ive is someone that can really make you want whatever they're selling. After the iPhone 5 keynote someone on Twitter joked that Ive could sell hair care products to himself. Let Cook run the show operationally but let others be the face of the company.
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Old Jan 20, 2013, 02:14 PM   #19
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Another article from cultofmac
http://www.cultofmac.com/211221/is-a...eally-failing/

Quote:
Apple*has “stumbled lately.” That’s the overwhelming consensus coming from the press, blogosphere and Wall Street recently.

Demand for the*iPad*and iPhone is dropping, we’re told, and Apple isn’t doing interesting or exciting things anymore.

Here’s what’s going on.

Big iPad, Small Demand; Small iPad, Big Demand

Reuters says Sharp, which is one of the companies making displays for iPads, hasslowed production, possibly because of a reduced demand for iPads. Demand in the 4th quarter was*weaker than expected, according to a Chinese market research company called TrendForce.

Cont.

Last edited by stridemat; Jan 20, 2013 at 04:58 PM.
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Old Jan 20, 2013, 05:05 PM   #20
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Silence, killing Apple? Um, no... silence helped build Apple.

The problem isn't silence, but predictability. Apple used to have surprise upon surprise coming outta left field. There'd be an event and Steve would come out and unveil something that we knew little to nothing about, often an entirely new product category. Designs would change wildly.

But now we've got this combination of accurate rumors/leaks and releases that follow established patterns. 3G, 3GS, 4, 4S, 5... then, lemme guess, oh... 5S...? Amaziyawn. And then... 6? And it will be available in... drumroll... black or white? With some minor spec improvements? And it will be... wait for it... THINNER? ZOMG! I so didn't see that coming.
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Old Jan 20, 2013, 06:24 PM   #21
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Silence, killing Apple? Um, no... silence helped build Apple.

The problem isn't silence, but predictability. Apple used to have surprise upon surprise coming outta left field. There'd be an event and Steve would come out and unveil something that we knew little to nothing about, often an entirely new product category. Designs would change wildly.

But now we've got this combination of accurate rumors/leaks and releases that follow established patterns. 3G, 3GS, 4, 4S, 5... then, lemme guess, oh... 5S...? Amaziyawn. And then... 6? And it will be available in... drumroll... black or white? With some minor spec improvements? And it will be... wait for it... THINNER? ZOMG! I so didn't see that coming.
Really? This seems a bit like revisionist history. iPod came out in 2001 and it was a whole 6 years before the iPhone. And then another 3 before the iPad. It's not like we has revolutionary products every year under Jobs.
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Old Jan 20, 2013, 10:15 PM   #22
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At what point does the saturation level peak. How many people are going to buy an iPad every year that is basically the same. The iPhone 5 is a flop because it is just taller, no big change over the 4S. This is why Samsung is eating their lunch. I wonder if Apple peaked too soon and now they can't top themselves.

Apple needs something huge to draw attention to themselves. And not bad attention that maps was. They have gotten stagnant.
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Old Jan 20, 2013, 10:27 PM   #23
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Originally Posted by Pakaku View Post
I doubt Apple feels the need to say anything, and they assume the profits they make on iPhones, iPads, Macs, etc speak for themselves.
Most consumers buy Apple products to use & enjoy them.

They don't care one wit about the companies bottom line.

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t what point does the saturation level peak. How many people are going to buy an iPad every year that is basically the same. The iPhone 5 is a flop because it is just taller, no big change over the 4S. This is why Samsung is eating their lunch. I wonder if Apple peaked too soon and now they can't top themselves.

Apple needs something huge to draw attention to themselves. And not bad attention that maps was. They have gotten stagnant.
Excellent points.

When a companies success is tied to a very dynamic leader and he dies, the going gets rough, really rough. Its happened before.
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Old Jan 20, 2013, 10:30 PM   #24
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Do you expect Apple to daily respond and refute the ramblings of uninformed people on the internet?
Not daily. But occasionally, they need to come out and defend themselves against the occasional baseless rumor if they know it's an outright lie which can HARM the company's brand image. I think that's what the OP is merely trying to say.
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Old Jan 21, 2013, 12:43 AM   #25
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At what point does the saturation level peak. How many people are going to buy an iPad every year that is basically the same. The iPhone 5 is a flop because it is just taller, no big change over the 4S. This is why Samsung is eating their lunch. I wonder if Apple peaked too soon and now they can't top themselves.

Apple needs something huge to draw attention to themselves. And not bad attention that maps was. They have gotten stagnant.
How exactly is Samsung eating Apple's lunch? And what evidence is there that the 5 is a flop? And by evidence I don't mean rumors from the WSJ or the comments sections from anti-Apple sites like Engadget and c|net. Do you have sales figures no one else has that proves the 5 is a flop?

See this is the BS that Apple absolutely nothing to counter and eventually perception become reality. So by the time Apple does report quarterly results the meme is already set that no matter what they report it's going to be spun negatively. They could report 60M iPhone and 20M iPad sales and we'd still hear that Apple is doomed and Samsung is winning.
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