Originally posted by vinea
[B]No clue why they choose Tuesday. I don't get waiting for a particular month though if you're complaining about random small launch events that don't occur in the old Jan/July Apr/Sept time table.
I mean that if it's ready in the beginning of May (just for arguments sake), then they shouldn't wait until the end of the month to intro and release it. They should just put out a notice, do their ads, and have it in the stors.
Then, if they do have some multi purpose event, such as this store opening, or a trade show, or whatever, they can talk it up.
Not the MBP but the upcoming MacBook. Do you believe it should be released with either just a press release or at a major event?
Or do you believe a smaller May event (like potentially the one under discussion) would be a better choice because its ready in May and not July?
Well, if it's ready just a week before something like the opening of a major store, then fine, intro and release it then. a week is no biggie, as long as it's more than just one product.
So your position is that they should launch the MacBook without an event, just a press release and then showcase it again in July? Mmmkay.
Yes, exactly. Get it out there. We all have been waiting for it. The press has been waiting for it. The general population has been waiting for it. When Apple releases it, that will be a big event in itself. There will be the same feeding frenzy they would have had anyway.
If its "just a phone" they screwed it up and the capital is better invested in something else IMHO.
Of course. Unless it's more than just a phone.
Always possible for them to screw it up. I expect them to and I'm happy if they do because it shows risk taking of the variety I like.
My finances won't be happy if they screw it up. Heh!
Do you believe that they would generate more and better coverage with Jobs doing his RDF thing or with just a press release?
That's the whole point. I don't think that Job's "RDF" works on anyone who isn't already attuned to it. i.e. the fans. It doesn't affect me. Does it really affect you?
Do you believe that something like the MacBook deserves that kind of treatment?
You've hit it with that one. The Macbook is a piece of equipment. It doesn't "deserve" anything. People "deserve".
Spindler was the guy that allowed clones and I think around that "open" timeframe you talk about.
Again, the policies as to the product mix has nothing to do with this. Jobs could allow clones, and still be doing things the way he does them.
Hmmm...financial guy...with an engineering degree from Rheinische Fachhochschule that worked marketing for DEC, then Intel and finally Apple Europe? More marketing guy than financial. Of course if you're going to pick on putting business guys in charge of tech companies why do you like Sculley?
He was the financial guy at Apple. The bean counter.
In an interview right after he was promoted, he was asked that getting there after two visionaries, Jobs and Scully, did he think that it took a visionary to run a company like Apple?
His answer was that; "It doesn't take a visionary to run Apple."
He was right. He ran it right into the ground!
The guy that liked low margins and growing market share but wasn't a Michael Dell? The guy that put Spindler in charge as COO in 1990 and essentially lame ducked himself into CTO to watch over his pet projects?
Nothing wrong with Spindler being COO, or CFO. But, anything else was a bad choice.
Uh huh...yes, market share dropped (because of smaller growth) but sales dropped? Lets see...sales just prior to Jobs...600-650K computers per quarter. Sales from the iMac pushed that number to around 900K per quarter until the usual Apple dip.
Either way, that's hardly "sales continued to drop" unless your math treats 700K to 1.4M sales as less than 600K-650K sales.
Apple's sales dropped from about 4 million units a year to less than 3.3 million a year, and except for a short lived bump up, stayed there until 18 months or so ago.
A product is typically more ready when a CEO is willing to take the stage and demo the danged thing than when they are not willing to take the stage and demo the danged thing.
CEOs have little sense of humor when it comes to looking like idiots in front of an audience.
You don't know that.
And about looking like an idiot, you're wrong there as well. Gates looks that way whenever he does a demo, as it hardly ever works right.
Recently While demonstrating the new Origami, the CEO of Samsung, or whoever it is that's producing it, looked like an idiot, as did the other two people who demo'd it after him.
Obviously it bear stating if you seem to think that corporate market share was impacted by the return of Jobs and his sekrit ways.
Apple wasn't doing too well until after the iPod was out for over a year, and they got it on Windows as well. That had a salutary effect on Apple's fortunes. It was luck more than anything else. Jobs said some time ago that they weren't planning on putting in on Windows, but the demand was so great. They weren't planning the iTunes store, but they thought it was a good idea when the iPods took off.
That worked out well
If your business runs on MacOS/OSX and your applications and workflows are built in that environment it is not a trivial decision to move to a different OS. It is no different than transitioning from Windows to something else except that there is an expecation that whatever software you're running has some equivalent in the Windows world for the most part.
In any case, this is hardly a link to anything that suggests that this issue was a significant contributor to lost corporate market share.
As opposed to say Spindler essentially abandoning the enterprise market to concentrate on soho, edu and home markets.
No. It's vastly different. There are massive corporate apps that simply don't run in OS X. There are tens of thousands of in-house apps that don't run on OS X. Those companies and governments can't simply move over because they need these apps. Hardware as well. Back room apps, network apps, etc. A tremendous undertaking.
One of the first things Jobs said when he first came back was that , in response to a question about the enterprise, was that "The enterprise is not our customer." Brilliant!!!
There's no point in mentioning Spindler anymore, because I've already said that he's an idiot. Enough.
If there are numerous articles that suggest that Apple lost significant share because of slow product ramps then it should be easy enough to find one?
Great, find articles on Google if you want to. Half the time you can't find something you read yesterday. You think I'm making it up? That's ridiculous
I did...1Q results for 1999:
"Net sales increased sequentially $154 million or 10% during the first quarter of 1999 as compared to the fourth quarter of 1998. The sequential revenue increase is attributable to a 13% rise in Macintosh unit shipments and incremental net sales from MacOS 8.5 upgrades. The rise in unit sales during the first quarter is attributable to a 21% increase in iMac unit sales compared to the fourth quarter of 1998 and a similar 15% increase in unit shipments of Power Macintosh G3 professional Macintosh systems partially offset by a 17% sequential decline in unit shipments of G3 Powerbooks resulting from the introduction of several new Powerbook models during the fourth quarter of 1998."
From the Fool Year in Review 1998:
"The company's market share had been eroding for years. It slipped again from 5.7% worldwide in 1996 to just 3.6% in 1997, with that number dropping to 2.6% in the December quarter. Its U.S. share dropped from 7.4% in '96 to 4.6% in '97 and 3.3% in the December period. This downward spiral resulted from the successful Wintel partnership that provided more user-friendly, Windows-based PCs that sapped Apple of its main competitive advantage. In response, Apple looked like a deer caught in the headlights: confused and scared.
What a difference a year makes. In 1998, Apple's stock price has tripled thanks to a dramatic turnaround that Jobs has produced through a series of material and spiritual transformations.
The iMac's success is indicative of the broader turnaround. The company sold 278,000 units in its first six weeks on the market, beating predictions that the company would sell 100,000 to 150,000 units during its fiscal fourth quarter. The iMac was the top selling desktop in superstores for August and September, according to ZD Market Intelligence. Meanwhile, International Data Corp. says Apple is now growing faster than the overall PC market, moving up to 5% of the U.S. market last quarter from 4.4% a year ago."http://www.fool.com/Features/1998/sp...view_win01.htm
Not quite the story you paint now is it?
The marketshare went up for a while. I did say that there was a bump. But it declined to under 2.8% until a couple of years ago. Since then it has been rising.
Yes, they stumbled in 2000 with the cube. Nor could they sustain the growth if '98 very long. But they recovered and are again beating projections. So the cycle continues. It doesn't look like they have many dogs in the product cycle this go around but you never know...perhaps there is an iTablet in the works and it'll be a real dog.
I hope not. I use PC tablets and think a Mac tablet would hopefully be great but you never know when Apple and Jobs will stumble again. Its a much bigger risk for Apple than Dell (even if Dell took a recent beating and Apple is the current darling).
Tablets are a dog in the marketplace. They are half of 1% of the laptop market, which is about half of the overall market. Not a great area for Apple to get into.
Repeated assertion does not an argument make. Dogs will appear in every product line up. The amount of risk a company is willing to take varies. Apple is apparently conservative. If you'd like to support your case you want to show that a crunched supply (in Jan/Jul no less) represents more long term risk than over building.
The difficuly, as you should know, is that without a control, you will never know. All you can see is the evaluations done by the firms like NPD that do this checking, and interviewing.
Do you suggest that always swinging for the fence is the optimal launch strategy? Because I can likely find sufficient number of case studies of businesses that overbuilt infrastructure and product and ended up dead because they over predicted sales.
I never said that. but that's what Jobs does. He rarely comes out with a quiet product that is major. Even the small products are often given more push than they deserve. Remember iPod socks? That was a joke of a while.
You certainly do not release a product expecting its a dog. On the other hand, a smaller run requires less capital investment minimizing your downside risk. The cost is short term channel shortages.
You're assuming that I'm talking about producing twice as much product. I'm not. Apple always seems to be about 20% or so down from what they need. 20% is not going to break the bank. But, it would satisfy the demand. you apparently don't read these forums when a new product comes out, or you would see the anger whan Apple comes up short, and then starts to lengthen the wait times.
Given that the normal release cycle is post Christmas anyway you have several months to get your house in order if you have hit on your hands before the next Christmas cycle.
It doesn't even have to be a hit. It could simply be a fairly well selling product, like the Mini's, which sell well, but not spectacularly.
Look, I think that we've truely drained this discussion. I'm willing to call a truce, if you are.