mad anthony

Rants, politics, and thoughts on politics, technology, life,
and stuff from a generally politically conservative Baltimoron.

Friday, December 24, 2004

Mmm, Apples...

I was skimming the Wall Street Journal's 15 people to watch this year. I noticed one of them was Apple's Steve Jobs.

It will be tough for Apple to fight on two fronts -- both preserving the iPod's dominance in music players and taking on giants like Dell and H-P in computers.

I agree Apple does have a strong fight in the MP3 player market - I like the iPod, and it certainly is selling well, but there a ton of competitors, and Apple needs to keep the iPod and iTunes fresh to not get beaten out. The iPod definitly is a mainstream product that competes against other mainstream products. I think they are very much mischaracterizing Apple's role in the computer industry, however. Apple will never compete directly with Dell or HP - which compete on price, while Apple competes by offering a product that is stylish, easy to use, unique, and appeals to certain segments. The way for Apple to succeed at selling Powerbooks and G5's isn't for it to try to compete with Dell - it's for it to appeal to the niche that it has strongest. These include students/schools, graphics arts professionals, musicians, computer geeks who like it's Unix-based OS, and users who like it's easy-to-use, and arguable more stable and virus/spyware proof OS.

To me, saying that Apple needs to compete with HP is like saying that BMW needs to compete with Kia because Kia sells more cars. They sell the same item, but aimed at different market segments and price points.

(full disclosure - I own both a homebuilt WinXP desktop and an Apple Powerbook, along with a couple partly functional Win9X laptops)

EDIT: Welcome Carnival of the Capitalist readers. If you enjoy reading about politics, technology, and useless facts about my life, check out the rest of my blog.


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