Originally Posted by xSamplex
Regarding tomorrow's announcement, I have a funny feeling they may pull a Mac Mini on us, and up the floor price by $100. Expecially now that they realize their competition can't match their price/performance ratio. But really, what's $100? I spent more than that on dinner with the family last Saturday without batting an eye. Spending that much more on a device I'd use daily for over a year? No big deal.
Doubtful. However it's possible - in considering the upcoming competition - they may have increased their own component cost significantly ("better" - not Retina - screen, more RAM, TBolt, zippier data and vid processing, one or two cams, etc.).
In that case, since they've likely fully recovered their "production experience costs" from developing iPad 1 and since those of the upgraded iPad 2 will be significantly less, we could
see the "real" iPad 2 start at $549, with the original - maybe even with a front camera slapped in - sticking around at $449 as the base model - putting net even more price pressure on the competition.
(PS: Your "let them eat cake" view of the "nothingness of $100" is a bit cavalier for many Apple loving folk of modest means of my acquaintance.)
Originally Posted by Sipadan
Amen to that. What kind of twisted logic brings analysts to portray Apple as on the brink of meltdown unless they somehow "prove" their upcoming IPad will be better than vaporware/half baked concepts that will for the most part never even make it to market?
Last time I checked I still have to see a competing tablet that delivers HALF AS GOOD an experience as the Ipad1, let alone the Ipad2, Dear analyst Sir. Maybe before pathetically trying to create a potential disaster scenario for Apple out of thin air you could actually evaluate products...
When any non Apple tablet actually matches the Ipad1, let's see then how far ahead Apple will already be
Ipad3 at least (spoken like an analyst....)
Originally Posted by res08hao
so if you eliminate cheap asian crap, how many are left? 2?
It might be worth pointing out that while MOST of the OS development and MUCH of the critical device engineering is (for now) done stateside, Apple's main products are actually built by that same Asian "Crap-Industrial Complex" (using many Asian-sourced components) - which is the same one which has eliminated or decimated many US industries, e.g., cars, TV's and too many others to mention.
Further, most of this happened with the US first starting to buy sub-assemblies or complementary products for their lines from Asia - which in every case eventually led to the creation of highly focused, tightly-managed, well-run competitors.
Software's the only thing which has kept an appearance of the US still leading the personal and mobile-computing pack - and while it's an art, Asian countries (including India with more English language speakers than the US, Britain, Canada and Australia combined, and decent to good engineering chops) are hardly incapable of learning it, and more and more coding is being done there.
Originally Posted by ktodack
I'm surprised no one has mentioned marketing. The people who follow web sites such as this one represent a tiny portion of the potential market. Most people get their information about consumer tech devices from television, newspapers/magazines and word of mouth from their friends. The IPad type device is still new to most people and IPad competitors can take some of the market with aggressive television advertising. Apple can't rest, it's not just neccessary to make great products, you must aggressively market to sell beyond the tech crowd.
Originally Posted by mytdave
That's a good point, but keep in mind that the vast majority of consumers truly aren't all that smart. They do no research, and very little hands-on. If a big-box retail sales person waves a shiny new object in their face and tells them it will solve 'world hunger', they will buy it. Most people don't understand or care about a superior product. The sea of Windows PCs shows this is true. Apple has to execute spectacularly with each new model, and they constantly have to stay in people's faces (marketing) to maintain their lead. The better product helps, but herding the sheeple comes first if you are to be successful.
The "mighty" can always fall. And in fact nearly always have. Whether GM or Rome, US Steel or the Brit Empire. Few predicted MS would almost destroy IBM when MS forked away from OS/2, even tho' that company has painfully re-invented itself over the last 20 years (after seriously considering breaking into five or so companies).
Invincibility is almost always illusory, and with the chief visionary's role at best declining over time, even the Phoenix that is Apple is always only an unexpected development or two from being knocked from its high-flying perch. E.g., another new device class emerging from a non-Apple source, political persecution from the EU regulators, a few product missteps, etc., etc.
It wouldn't happen overnight, but the surest path downward is for a company to start believing its own PR (and the cocky proclamations of its most dedicated fans). All IS fair in love and business war. And pride still goes before a fall.
Apple needs to constantly act as if it's under serious assault, and that product, research and marketing need to keep geared up like there's no tomorrow. Or there won't be.