Smartphone makers plan to mirror Apple's approach with fewer models each year

*LTD*

macrumors G4
Original poster
Feb 5, 2009
10,703
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http://www.digitimes.com/NewsShow/NewsSearch.asp?DocID=PD000000000000000000000000022788&query=APPLE

http://www.appleinsider.com/article...les_approach_with_fewer_models_each_year.html

Smartphone makers plan to mirror Apple's approach with fewer models each year


Four major smartphone makers are reportedly planning to reduce the number of new handsets they produce, in an attempt to capture the success Apple has had in releasing just one iPhone model each year.

HTC, Research in Motion, Sony and Motorola Mobility are all for fewer smartphone models, DigiTimes reported on Friday, citing its industry sources in Taiwan. The companies allegedly plan to focus their resources and marketing on "designated models" instead of diluting the market with too many options.

The only major iPhone upgrade Apple introduced in calendar 2011 was the iPhone 4S. In the just-concluded holiday quarter, Apple is widely expected to have sold at least 30 million handsets, led largely by demand for the latest model.

"The strategy shifts come after Apple and Samsung Electronics have apparently managed to widen their market share against rival vendors by focusing on a single or some flagship models each year," the report said.

Apple's success has already been mimicked by Samsung, which found success in pushing its Galaxy S II smartphone in 2011. That handset sold 10 million units in its first six months, and Samsung is believed to have sold about 32 million smartphones in its record holiday quarter.

By focusing on fewer models, smartphone makers hope to be able to increase their sales, but also save money on development and marketing costs. The adjustments could also allow the companies to reach economies of scale in production, and be more efficient in obtaining components and shipping products.

The apparent change in strategies comes as the launch of the iPhone 4S helped to gain Apple significant market share in the U.S. One report released earlier this week said that Apple's share of smartphone sales in America grew from 26 percent in the third quarter of 2011 to 43 percent in the months of October and November.
What happened to all the talk about "choice"? All that openness, and choice, and all those lovely buzzwords that described the mess that is the smartphone industry outside of Cupertino. The industry is waking up to what Apple has known for years: a quality user experience via differentiation. A little shot of vertical development in the arm, hopefully.

The smartphone segment needs it. Badly. One Android OEM is squeezing out almost all others, and sales are split between numerous OEMs who have serious trouble with differentiation. Android isn't profitable at this time - ask HTC, Motorola, etc., unless you're Google counting up ad revenue or you're a carrier gouging consumers, or Samsung... who seems to be going in a direction opposite to everyone else.

It's a mess. But finally, under Apple's tutelage, the focus might just shift from a crazy race to the bottom, to a crazy race to consumers' hearts and minds.
 

Rodimus Prime

macrumors G4
Oct 9, 2006
10,136
4
Explain to me how fewer models means less choice? If you look at them a other of the new phones that come out every week are at most a step upgrade to others.

It means fewer custom designs for the carriers.
This is something the android crew has been saying goes for a while but leave it to you to some how try to spend this as less choice and coping apple. Then linking to Apple fanboy sites.
Sorry but the Apple fancy sites bashing non Apple products is not a valid source.
Also to copy apple it would require making only one new model a year. Not what they are dropping to which would be a more reasonable number.
 

dgree03

macrumors 65816
Jan 8, 2009
1,177
0
It's a mess. But finally, under Apple's tutelage, the focus might just shift from a crazy race to the bottom, to a crazy race to consumers' hearts and minds.
It didn't take apples "tutelage" to get android to smash iOS in marketshare.

Not only that, but apple does what works well for them! Congrats! My iPhone in my pocket at work or my Thunderbolt at home doesn't get affected one bit.

Apples model isnt the only one that works :eek: I know, shocker.
 

Rodimus Prime

macrumors G4
Oct 9, 2006
10,136
4
Did you seriously just ask that? :eek:
Yeah it should be better more like how is fewer models means no choice.

Or how is fewer models mean no choice? I kind of messed up but I was on my galaxy tab and not my computer and posting from a touch screen is a pain no matter what it is on.
 

vvswarup

macrumors 6502a
Jul 21, 2010
539
215
Explain to me how fewer models means less choice? If you look at them a other of the new phones that come out every week are at most a step upgrade to others.

It means fewer custom designs for the carriers.
This is something the android crew has been saying goes for a while but leave it to you to some how try to spend this as less choice and coping apple. Then linking to Apple fanboy sites.
Sorry but the Apple fancy sites bashing non Apple products is not a valid source.
Also to copy apple it would require making only one new model a year. Not what they are dropping to which would be a more reasonable number.
A few months ago, LTD called Samsung's move of making so many different models of "Galaxy" tablets as "throwing mud at the wall and hoping it sticks." You touted Samsung's move as offering choice to the consumer and that with iOS, people have to "settle."

It seems that you have changed your tune.

Resources are limited. It's better to do a good job with a few products than do an okay job with a bunch of products.
 

entatlrg

macrumors 68040
Mar 2, 2009
3,376
3
Waterloo & Georgian Bay, Canada
Yeah it should be better more like how is fewer models means no choice.

Or how is fewer models mean no choice? I kind of messed up but I was on my galaxy tab and not my computer and posting from a touch screen is a pain no matter what it is on.
I post from my iPhone's touchscreen just fine, amazingly simple, smooth and quick! I admit I usually use Siri.

Nice to see Apple continuing to lead the way. So many models of Android phones out there, most not up-datable to the latest OS ... consumers got drowned in the Android hype, flurry of handsets and geeks in the cell shops flogging them, that with the lower prices Android gained market share fast.

Now that many 'average consumers' have actual experience with Android handsets they're realizing the true cost of the money they saved ... not simple and fluid as iOS, poor battery life, ETC., just not the fit and finished feel of the iPhone. In fact many Android owners I know say it's their last one, iPhone for them next time...

Android OEM's are wondering what to do ... firing a shotgun stream of handsets every few months to consumers isn't working out for the manufacturer OR consumer.

Seems like the company copying Apple the most, Samsung, is the one doing the best, lol. Too bad they aren't Samsung's own innovations, no worries ... knock offs NEVER outdo the original. :)
 

kdarling

macrumors P6
Also to copy apple it would require making only one new model a year. Not what they are dropping to which would be a more reasonable number.
Yes. If we can believe DigiTimes' Taiwanese sources for this rumor, then ...

... instead of dropping to just one new yearly model like Apple, it sounds like they're going to follow Samsung's method of focusing pubic attention on a common flagship name (e.g. Galaxy) even with multiple submodels.

Easier to advertise one major name than many. Droid and Galaxy are memorable. Versus all the names that HTC uses, for instance.
 

ChazUK

macrumors 603
Feb 3, 2008
5,390
24
Essex (UK)
There will still be choice despite slower release schedules.

For example, HTC did themselves no favours releasing the Sensation, Sensation XL, Sensation XE, Desire S, Desire HD, Desire Z, Incredible S, Wildfire S..... (there were more 2011 releases beyond that).

We'll still have the choice of hardware keyboards, game pads, capacitive buttons, physical buttons or even no buttons.

If anyone is going the Apple route, look at Nokia under the command of Microsoft. They deserve to do well with the changes they've made and the hardware they're pumping out.
 

Rodimus Prime

macrumors G4
Oct 9, 2006
10,136
4
I post from my iPhone's touchscreen just fine, amazingly simple, smooth and quick! I admit I usually use Siri. :)
That not touch screen and compare it to using a normal keyboard. Which do you find easier. I have and do post from my iPod touch, Atrix 4G, Galaxy tab 10.1 or an iPad depending on what I am using. The iPod I find the most annoying due to I really do not like iOS autocorrect and keyboard on the smaller devices compared to Swiftkey. Then of course Atrix is next and then iPad2 and the one I like the best is Galaxy Tab but again that is iOS keyboard vs Swiftkey and I just like swiftkey better.

Speed wise of the touch screens I am the fastest on the Atrix and slowest on the tablets. Just the tablets are easier to check my work.

But touch screen verse keyboard/mouse the keyboard and mouse I find is a heck of a lot easier and faster than touch screen. Plus I make a lot fewer errors and it is less tiring.
 

smoledman

macrumors 68000
Oct 17, 2011
1,912
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Well Apple has redefined "choice" to mean that the iPod Touch didn't even get a single hardware upgrade in 2011.
 

belvdr

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Aug 15, 2005
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No longer logging into MR
Well Apple has redefined "choice" to mean that the iPod Touch didn't even get a single hardware upgrade in 2011.
I've read that multiple times (maybe the ibuprofen for my back pain is taking a toll), but I can't make sense out of it. Choice doesn't involve hardware upgrades. You can still choose that device regardless of whether it's been upgraded recently or not.

EDIT: On topic, I don't care. I got rid of my smartphone and went back to a flip phone. It's cheaper and my life isn't devoted to the device on my hip. Personally, I wish others would do the same. Too many families sit in the same room, all using various devices, and nobody talking to each other. I'm not sure how families function any more.
 
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soco

macrumors 68030
Dec 14, 2009
2,837
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Yardley, PA
This is (read: should) be an obvious benefit to us as consumers. The more these manufacturers concentrate on a particular phone, the better it should be. After all, we know the reason the iPhone is ~better than other phones is the fact that Apple only makes one per year.

Explain to me how fewer models means less choice?
I...

Well crap, I can't... it hurts my head. :(
 

smoledman

macrumors 68000
Oct 17, 2011
1,912
314
I've read that multiple times (maybe the ibuprofen for my back pain is taking a toll), but I can't make sense out of it. Choice doesn't involve hardware upgrades. You can still choose that device regardless of whether it's been upgraded recently or not.

EDIT: On topic, I don't care. I got rid of my smartphone and went back to a flip phone. It's cheaper and my life isn't devoted to the device on my hip.
The problem with having zero competition in the PMP market is Apple is free to not refresh the line in 2011.
 

belvdr

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No longer logging into MR
The problem with having zero competition in the PMP market is Apple is free to not refresh the line in 2011.
Agreed, but that doesn't affect choice. If there is zero competition, then there's only one music player out there (which isn't quite true). Assuming (incorrectly) Apple produces the only personal music player, then if they refresh it, you still have but one choice (the new model).

Still, Apple offers several iPod devices, so you still have choice. So, they haven't redefined it at all. They are just leaving you with the same choices.
 

roadbloc

macrumors G3
Aug 24, 2009
8,784
213
UK
ITT: *LTD* yet again predicting an Apple controlled future with bias arguments and going back on what he has previously said. Move on folks, nothing new to see here.
 

smoledman

macrumors 68000
Oct 17, 2011
1,912
314
ITT: *LTD* yet again predicting an Apple controlled future with bias arguments and going back on what he has previously said. Move on folks, nothing new to see here.
Aren't we living in an Apple controlled reality right now?
 

malman89

macrumors 68000
May 29, 2011
1,651
6
Michigan
Sure looks that way.
Riiiiight. Just like we're in a post-PC (and I have half a thought to believe you meant post-Windows instead of post-PC, which would be even more ridiculous) Apple created world, right? Total farce.

As stated, more consistent naming/branding is a positive for the manufacturers. Motorola/Droid and Samsung/Galaxy are two Android examples. Throw in Nokia/Lumia for WP.
 

reefoid

macrumors regular
Aug 5, 2011
136
77
UK
Sure looks that way.
Yes, through your Apple-tinted glasses I'm sure it does look that way. Take them off and you'll see the rest of us live in a world where technology helps and improves our lives, regardless of manufacturer or rabid brand-loyalty. Maybe you should try it.
 

*LTD*

macrumors G4
Original poster
Feb 5, 2009
10,703
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Canada
Whaaat? You don't seriously believe that do you? Unbelievable. Your level out out-of-touch meets no end.
Apple doesn't need MacWorld. They've got CES. And they weren't even there.

Definitely not. It's actually a little sad as a reflection on society that people can even feel that a tech company is in control.
In lasting and palpable control of the course and direction of consumer technology? Absolutely. Everything else? Probably not. Though if you think so, it might be time to write a book. Or begin therapy.


http://english.cri.cn/6826/2012/01/14/1461s676267.htm

Showcasing more than 20,000 products from a record number of over 3,200 exhibitors in an exhibition space of 0.17 million square meters, the 2012 International Consumer Electronics Show (CES) turned out to be one of the largest in the event's 44-year-old history.

Though Apple was absent, its dominating influence was felt everywhere throughout the world's largest consumer technology trade show, which ended in Las Vegas on Friday.

While other top-notch brands are touting their versions of Ultrabook, Smartphone, Smart TV and Tablets, Apple once again proved its status as the industry's most innovative firm and role model.

Over 300 companies exhibited Apple accessories, even more defined their products in terms of Apple's products.

"It's now clear that one theme will dominate this year's International Consumer Electronics Show: catching up with Apple," said the San Francisco Chronicle on its website.

At last year's CES, it was all about Tablets. This year, the super-thin Ultrabooks are in the show's spotlight. The "Ultrabook" laptops are making computers as attractive as Tablets while retaining standard performance.

More than 30 types of Ultrabooks were presented by PC makers such as Hewlett-Packard, Lenovo, Acer, Samsung and others.

The concept of "Ultrabook" was created by computer processor giant Intel in 2011 in response to Apple's Macbook Air.

CNET, the official streaming media partner of CES, said in a review that "The Ultrabook format has been described as a MacBook Air running the Windows OS."

In the competition for the best Smartphone of CES 2012, Nokia's Lumia 900 came out on top, staging a comeback for the mobile phone leader Nokia after it joined hands with software giant Microsoft. Other ambitious contenders include Lenovo K800, the world's first Smartphone containing Intel's powerful chip.

However, no matter how smart, fast or pretty the new Smartphones are, their significance to the industry in the innovative sense is overshadowed by Apple's iPhone.

Matthias Person, an exhibitor and chief executive officer of the German company iBolt, which is doing business related to Apple's products, told Xinhua that he thought iPhone is still the most popular one on the market.

"Maybe there will be an increase in Android systems in the future, but Apple will still have the lead in this technology," he said.


As regards living room technology, Smart TV dominated the scene.

Samsung, LG, Lenovo, Hisense and many other TV manufacturers were promoting their Smart TVs at the show.

Liu Jun, Lenovo's senior vice president, told media at the sidelines of the CES that Smart TV is the new trend and will ultimately replace traditional TV.

Philip Newton, Samsung Australia's audiovisual director, told media that Apple TV is old news, but that Smart TV is the future and has already arrived.

But that future seems to have Apple written all over it, as competitors are already anticipating Apple's iTV, the last project of the deceased Apple co-founder Steve Jobs.

The release of Microsoft's Windows 8 operating system is being praised by industry insiders and is seen as a milestone for the software giant. This signals Microsoft's entry into the fields of communication and the Internet, Liu Jun said.

However, global financial services firm Morgan Stanley was not at all optimistic that Windows 8 is able to pump up PC sales to beat Apple.

"We are in the middle of a technology revolution," Consumer Electronics Association chief Gary Shapiro told Xinhua. However, a real revolution to lift the industry out of Apple's shadow has yet to take place.
http://www.appleinsider.com/article...ntels_ultrabooks_to_samsungs_galaxy_note.html

http://www.macnewsworld.com/rsstory/74152.html

http://www.neowin.net/news/its-official-2012-is-the-year-of-macbook-clones

http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2012/01/07/BUCB1MLBCL.DTL

Too true.
 
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