Is Apple No Longer Cool?
Apple spent a lot of the last decade successfully riding the trendy wave. Whether it had been MP3 players, smart phones, tablets, laptops or PC’s, Apple was the one that everybody wanted, and anything else looked like the “thoughtful” (read: uncool) set of shoes that your mum made you wear to school.
This wasn’t by fluke. Apple’s plan was simple. To find an industry where the goods were unsexy although practical, designed by engineers for ordinary people. Then Apple will come in using a product with new design and a beautiful, intuitive but practical and easy to use interface and then market it to get a premium cost, hence creating the “it” item of this moment. It was a good plan, and of course, it did the trick very well for decades.
But Apple’s plan has not been working so well recently. That is because the firms they’re currently trying to displace are not so easily pushed over as before.
Apple’s first failure to control came with the Apple Music idea, their streaming audio support. Following countless users downloading (and therefore possessing) audio through iTunes, Apple tried to present their own streaming support business. Just this time, they probably got in too late.
Services such as Pandora and (particularly)Spotify had already seized the popular imagination, and also their goods were nicely designed and well enjoyed. Apple Music wasn’t any of these things and it didn’t supply users with anything which seemed to be an advancement or motive to change from the programs that they were already using.
Among its selling points–that the ability has been missing on Gen Zs, many of whom did not have any music and millennials.
The gap is shown in present adoption amounts, together with millennials preferring Spotify to Apple Music by 47% to 14%.
Although Spotify may still be trying hard to make money whilst Apple has over a quarter-trillion dollars cash in the bank, they have something a lot more precious–this cool element. Apple is the parents’ music support, chunky and somewhat a little dorky.
Pandora and Spotify will be the hip services that listeners desire. The next misstep of Apple was in the region of voice orders. Siri, Apple’s omnipresent voice helper, was one of the first to promote but premiered before she was prepared for prime time. Her amusing mistakes led the way and became a bit of a pop culture joke. (Amazon controls near 75 percent of this voice-enabled speaker marketplace.)
Apple’s answer to Alexa, the HomePod, was greeted with a collective yawn as it had been announced earlier this season. It’s also the cost of its rivals. While HomePod does have a decent speaker, the Amazon Echo Dot, a forty dollar unit that connects to a variety of high-end stereo speakers, so allows audiophiles receive the quality they need at a sixth of the price tag, while enabling them to remain inside the highly improved (and now way trendier) Echo ecosystem.
Apple’s closing overlook on the cool front was at the streaming device marketplace, in which three recent research companies found Apple TV trailing considerably behind Roku, Chromecast and Amazon’s Fire TV concerning market-share.
Again, Apple launched in a marketplace where the first choice (Roku) wasn’t just pretty well-designed but had an enthusiastic fan base also. Along with the merchandise, Apple introduced it just wasn’t that good. In cases like this, it was operational and well-designed, but no more and it had station choices that are much fewer.
The actual killer though was that the cost stage: at $150 and$200, based on the quantity of storage, Apple TV is 6-8 times as costly as the entrance level Roku, whose capability to play with Netflix in your TV set using a straightforward and easy-to-use interface is pretty much on par with Apple’s.
And so once more Apple has less than ½ of Roku’s market share, is apparently again the overpriced device that your parents purchase because they are afraid to choose a new name (Roku) they haven’t ever heard about.
The TV Problem
The lessening of the coolness of the brand (and the consequent market-share loss) introduces an enormous issue for Apple as it tries to enter into the TV industry.
The premise is that Apple will disperse their shows via Apple Music, that will probably only be accessible on Apple TV.
Or, to be a bit more heartless but realistic about any of this, their shows will be dispersed on the least popular streaming audio service that will only be accessible on the least used streaming TV apparatus, which will probably be controlled with the least common voice-activated speaker.
Not a great beginning point when the target market for all those TV programs is those audiences that aren’t in the thrall of both its products and Apple like the previous generation.
Luckily, all isn’t doom and gloom in Cupertino. The iPhone, the merchandise responsible for a chunk of that dollar cash pile and Apple seller hasn’t lost its cool element.
If anything, the iPhone’s cool element is climbing, at least with Gen Z. Based on a study in Piper Jaffray, 76 percent of U.S. teens possess an iPhone, up from 69 percent one year past, and 81 percent said they anticipate their next telephone for an iPhone, up from 75 percent.
That’s a win and provides a beginning point for increasing their devices to Apple. Teenagers rely on their parents paying for the subscriptions and thus the goal is to try and get both teenagers and their parents to rethink Apple TV and Apple Music as adolescents are more likely to watch their TV shows on their mobiles than their parents.
It’s extremely hard for a brand to become cool, but it’s even harder to become cool again once you’ve lost it.