Think Different

Apple will not wait to see what the market wants

The announcement that Steve Jobs is to resign as Apple’s CEO should come as no surprise.

There is no doubt the influence of Jobs has been hugely important in making Apple the company it is today.

Steve Jobs career (source: The Economist)

However, IMHO will continue its onward march, not least because the market has been well aware of Jobs’ health issues and there is certainly no ‘Jobs premium’ built into Apple’s valuation.

It is not by chance that Apple is the success it is. This is a company that:

  1. has a strategy well in place for the mid-term
  2. is dominant in the tablet market – a market that has barely considered adolescence let alone maturity
  3. is leader in the smart phone market
  4. though it still only has single figure market share in the PC market, IMHO will continue to take share.

This company does not wait to see what the market wants – it creates what the market did not know it wanted but when it has it, it wants more. It will continue so to do.
It also have a strong competitive position: Apple has developed some quite unique barriers to entry through the iTunes store and the AppStore – which has the effect of creating much ‘stickier’ customers. Additionally, through being vertically integrated they can now not only produce the best product but can do so at the best prices – their competitors are desperately struggling to match the iPad price without making losses.

For sure, Apple will not be better without Steve Jobs but I hope that he has injected enough of his DNA into the company to let her continue this success story without him.

All the best to Tim Cook, new CEO, who has already proved himself extremely capable.

Other interesting articles on the same subject:

Freakonomics: Was Steve Jobs’ Retirement Already Priced into Apple Stock?

The Economist: Steve Jobs resigns. The minister of magic steps down

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June 2011: Most popular retail sites

comScore Logo

Amazon, eBay and Alibaba See Largest Global Audiences
In June 2011, Amazon Sites had the largest global audience among the the retail and auction sites analyzed, with more than 282 million visitors, representing 20.4 percent of the worldwide audience age 15 and older accessing the Internet from a home or work location. eBay was not far behind with 223.5 million visitors (16.2 percent reach), followed by China’s Alibaba.com Corporation, which includes sites such as Taobao, Alibaba.com and Alipay, with 156.8 million visitors (11.3 percent reach). Apple.com Worldwide Sites saw its global audience eclipse 134 million visitors, representing nearly 10 percent of all Internet users.

Select Retail and Auction Sites Ranked by Unique Visitors (000); June 2011; Total Worldwide Audience, Visitors Age 15+ – Home/Work Locations
Source: comScore Media Metrix
Total Unique Visitors (000) % Reach
Total Internet : Total Audience 1,383,098 100.0%
Amazon Sites 282,233 20.4%
eBay 223,520 16.2%
Alibaba.com Corporation 156,780 11.3%
Apple.com Worldwide Sites 134,296 9.7%
Rakuten Inc 57,785 4.2%
Wal-Mart 44,650 3.2%
Hewlett Packard 38,491 2.8%
MercadoLibre 33,481 2.4%
Otto Gruppe 31,779 2.3%
Groupe PPR 31,686 2.3%

Geographical Visitation Analysis for Retail and Auction Sites
Analysis of the geographic composition of visitors to these select retail and auction sites revealed a mix of both globally distributed audiences and more regionally concentrated audiences. Amazon Sites and Apple.com Worldwide Sites showed more globally distributed audiences compared to most other brands in the study.

On the other hand, China’s Alibaba.com Corporation (85.7 percent) and Japan’s Rakuten, Inc. (72.7 percent) reach sourced the vast majority of their traffic from the Asia Pacific region.

Regional Audience Composition Analysis of Select Retail and Auction Sites; June 2011; Total Worldwide Audience, Visitors Age 15+ – Home/Work Locations
Source: comScore Media Metrix
Percent Composition of Unique Visitors
North America Europe Asia Pacific Middle East – Africa Latin America
Total Internet 14.9% 26.7% 41.1% 8.7% 8.6%
Amazon Sites 35.4% 31.8% 24.1% 4.5% 4.2%
eBay 34.6% 46.9% 11.7% 4.0% 2.8%
Alibaba.com Corporation 4.5% 5.3% 85.7% 2.5% 1.9%
Apple.com Worldwide Sites 32.0% 29.6% 24.9% 8.0% 5.6%
Rakuten Inc 5.3% 19.8% 72.7% 1.5% 0.7%
Wal-Mart 83.4% 8.9% 0.7% 0.5% 6.4%
Hewlett Packard 45.1% 26.4% 14.3% 6.7% 7.5%
MercadoLibre 1.7% 4.5% 0.4% 0.2% 93.3%
Otto Gruppe 4.3% 92.3% 1.0% 2.1% 0.2%
Groupe PPR 16.1% 74.4% 2.2% 4.7% 2.6%

Source and original article: comScore Press Release

Amazon

Amazon clever move

no app storeWe all know that Apple is quite greedy on the App Store. Moreover, Apple is explicitly forbidding applications from including a ‘buy’ button within the apps themselves that link to an external payment flow: this is why you can’t buy an ebook using Amazon Kindle App on the iPhone/iPad.

Shortly, Amazon was facing the same problem than Financial Times and it looks like they come across the same solution: bye-bye App, welcome HTML5.

The Kindle Cloud Reader is already live, although “limited” to Chrome and Safari web browsers and iPad.

Amazon Kindle Clouds TweetWell done, Amazon!

TechCrunch has an article on this, too.

Cellphones

Mobile war: who will win?

android vs iphone

In a recent report, Nielsen has stated that in U.S. Smartphone Market, Android is Top Operating System, Apple is Top Manufacturer.

Nielsen US mobile phone market share Q2 2011

We all know that Google has a business model for Android that goes far beyond the “simple” device sales figures (read something about it here, and listen to what Schmidt has to say on this subject). But are we sure that the people in MV aren’t missing something?

Apple captured two thirds of available mobile phone profits in Q2. Take a moment to let that sink in. Apple now controls over 66 percent of all the profits amongst the major players in the mobile space. HTC, RIM, LG, Sony-Ericsson, Samsung Motorola, and Nokia combined for the other 33 or so percent of profits in the space (with a few of them: Nokia, Motorola, LG, and Sony actually losing money).

Read the whole article on TechCrunch!

Nokia Final Days?

Phone makers market capitalisation

It seems that smartphone roaring sales are crushing Nokia Chief executive Stephen Elop’s transition plan. The lack of news on the upcoming (?) Nokia-Windows phone and the shift towards hi-end products (i.e. Apple Iphone and Samsung Android-equipped devices) coming from emerging countries have lead in Q2 2011 to a $692 million loss, the second in the history of the Finnish company.

Read more about it in this interesting article on ViewsWire.