Horace Dediu: Why Doesn't Anybody Copy Apple?

Discussion in 'Apple, Inc and Tech Industry' started by Rogifan, Feb 27, 2013.

  1. Rogifan macrumors Core


    Nov 14, 2011
    Intersting article from Horace Dediu wondering why companies copy Apple products but don't copy being Apple. We're starting to see more vertical integration from Microsoft and Google. But I think Apple is still unique in terms of how it's run - small number of products, flat hierarchy, one P&L owned by the CFO, and now with Cook's org changes no divisions really competing with each other. Also I think Apple is unique in that it asks the question 'why?' more than 'why not?'. Obviously this isn't something Wall Street gets. I don't think they've ever really understood Apple. If they did they wouldn't be pushing for Apple to basically become Samsung releasing phones and tablets at every conceivable size and price point.

  2. roadbloc macrumors G3


    Aug 24, 2009
    Vertical Integration is hardly an Apple unique thing. Never has been.
  3. vrDrew macrumors 65816

    Jan 31, 2010
    Midlife, Midwest
    Horace is one of my favorite writers and thinkers on all-things Apple and mobile.

    I think the real reason comes down to a unique factor in the computer business: System software. Its almost impossible to grow an ecosystem around a new operating system the way that Apple does.

    Android has achieved considerable success - but that is only because Google essentially gives it away for free. (And there is considerable debate over how much, if any, money Google makes from it.) If Google had decided from the get-go to keep Android strictly for use on its own phones - it probably would have disappeared years ago.

    If you look at recent history in the mobile business, the examples of Nokia (with its Symbian os) and RIM/Blackberry serve only to reinforce the argument: While each in its own time enjoyed success, the fact that neither generated sufficient user buy-in (ie. people owned the phones, but didn't buy enough Apps/Content) to protect the brand when faced with a competitive choice from the iPhone or Android handset.
  4. Renzatic Suspended


    Aug 3, 2011
    Gramps, what the hell am I paying you for?
    I think the more important question isn't how much Google makes off Android directly, but rather how much they make off their services packaged with officially sanctioned Android phones.

    Android is a lot like Linux in that it's open source and freely distributed. Most companies that deal with Linux, like Red Hat and Canonical, barely make anything off the OS itself. They instead make their cash off of high level customer support and by offering various services. In Google's case all this comes from Maps, and Gmail, Google Plus, the Play Store, and all that other good stuff.

    So it isn't how much Google is making off of Android directly, but rather how much they're making off their services running on Android.
  5. smoledman macrumors 68000

    Oct 17, 2011
    Samsung Wallet just copied Apple's Passbook, so there.
  6. pdjudd macrumors 601

    Jun 19, 2007
    Plymouth, MN
    Doesn't count. The OP was talking about copying Apple's business tactic of vertical integration all the way. Not about their products which plenty of people already do.

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