The latest research data on US consumer electronics spending from analyst house NPD shows that Apple has a commanding market position, taking 19.9 per cent of all sales in 2012. The top five companies by spending last year were Apple, Samsung, HP, Sony, and Dell, but of those only Apple and Samsung actually saw their market …
I can't believe they still sell iPod's.
I can believe they still sell iPod Shuffles but that's about it. It's cheap, it's barely bigger than a button and there's no moving parts or screen to scratch so you can take it jogging or to the gym without it being much of a disaster if you drop it or lose it. It's more expensive than the competition but that doesn't negate the market segment it's aimed at. And the iPod Touch is good for the kids, letting them have all the latest apps without a mobile contract.
The Nano and the Classic doesn't seem to have much purpose though.
I might get a new iPod classic some time soon. My old one is OLD and my phone cannot hold all my music/audiobooks.
Granted, it's not a huge market, but as long as they own it and make money off of it without too much effort, why not keep at it?
I think there's still a market for standalone mp3 players (though I can't believe the ipod touch, basically a 3.5" tablet, still sells for over £200 in some cases - just get a much cheaper small Android tablet and put in a 32GB microSD - when the former get all the publicity, and the latter don't, it's no surprise Apple get more money). Though it annoys me more that there's an entire industry of things like speakers that still only work with ipods, even though plenty of people might prefer to connect with say their Android phone - or maybe they just Think Different, and want to use a different player like a Sansa.
(My LG Smart TV takes USB, and Just Works OOTB with any kind of player or device you connect to it - strange that a TV works better as an audio player, because of the audio industry catering to only one company. That can't even keep compatibility with itself having changed the connector - I'm not sure how that now works with these "works with your ipod" products...)
I can also see a point for hard drive based players with lots of storage - though the real question is why it's not possible to get a tablet with a big hard disk, since the obvious use as a media player.
The Classic has a potential 160GB of dedicated music space that fits in a pocket and holds a battery charge all day, for the person who needs a device to be able to survive 24 hours without being constantly connected to a charger while working. No internet needed, no games needed, no phone calls needed - and all that stuff drains down the battery and is good for what, in the end? Other devices do all that stuff better.
In the 90's I had a cassette Walkman with a belt clip that pretty much traveled with me 24/7 - all I wanted then was for it to be able to play any song I owned at will instead of having to rely only on the (squeaky) tapes. Now I have that. If I could get 160GB of storage (no flashy stuff, just music playing for headphones and AUX jacks) from another brand, I'd switch. But graphics and internet and games have flooded the market, and when it's not the bonus features crowding out battery life and driving up price, it's the storage cutting off at a paltry 16GB. For a dedicated music lover that wants to listen to that one song RIGHT NOW, none of those other devices serve the right purpose. (Cloud storage is a cute alternative but once I'm on the go, I'm getting charged data rates for sucking all that data down to my phone, and that eats up battery as well. Also drive through a tunnel or between some hills and see how reliable data connections can be.)
Unless by now there is a non-Apple mp3 player available at 160GB with a music-playing battery life of 8-10 hours. If there is then I'll gladly switch. Only problem with the iPod Classic is I can't get music I lost the backup for OFF of this thing without a lot of trouble.
Subtext: It's the stuff aimed at people with lots of money that is doing well. A sign of the times more than anything else.
And ... it's another handpicked statistic that favours Apple - what about every other country in the world, where other companies come top? What about other market segments, or top overall? What about by sales (we already know that people spend more on Apple stuff, it costs more)?
But I expect this story to be plastered all over the UK media, whilst all other possible statistics go ignored.
(I'm sure I read a statistic once saying Samsung had something like generating 20% of the entire GDP of South Korea. Companies often do better in their home market - I wonder what Apple's share is in South Korea?)
"Companies often do better in their home market"
Then Apple should be doing brilliantly in China, Ireland, Bermuda and the Cayman Islands. The only thing Apple has in the US is a few fancy buildings and an HQ somewhere in Cupertino somewhere in Cupertino somewhere in Cupertino somewhere in Cupertino somewhere in Cupertino...
Re: "Companies often do better in their home market"
Well, I know companies are multinational, but the effect is more based on perception from consumers and the media - they still see a multinational's original country, and don't care where the offices are physically located. More generally, my point is that things can vary worldwide significantly (this is especially true for [smart]phones), but for some reason the UK media loves to report the US situation as if it were typical (consider that recent Register article claiming iphone was the number one platform in Q4, but actually the stats were just the US).
The US media have US blinkers on too. I remember all the coverage about how Nokia was a failure because it couldn't crack the US market but it one of the biggest phone manufactures in the world and dominated lots of other markets. Go figure.
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