I’m still catching up on coverage of Apple’s iPhone and Apple Watch event last month. Ben Thompson makes some excellent points:
The strategy is, dare I say, bordering on over-confidence. Apple
is raising prices on its best product even as that product’s
relative differentiation from the company’s next best model is the
smallest it has ever been.
Here, though, I thought the keynote’s “Mission: Impossible”-themed
opening really hit the mark: the reason why franchises rule
Hollywood is their dependability. Sure, they cost a fortune to
make and to market, but they are known quantities that sell all
over the world — $735 million-to-date for the latest Tom Cruise
thriller, to take a pertinent example.
That is the iPhone: it is a franchise, the closest thing to a
hardware annuity stream tech has ever seen. Some people buy an
iPhone every year; some are on a two-year cycle; others wait for
screens to crack, batteries to die, or apps to slow. Nearly all,
though, buy another iPhone, making the purpose of yesterday’s
keynote less an exercise in selling a device and more a matter of
informing self-selected segments which device they will ultimately
buy, and for what price.
How long does this continue? Ten years? Longer? It seems to me there’s no end in sight. The franchise isn’t just still going strong, it’s stronger than ever.