What really is the next big thing for Apple? Now that’s the one question in the minds of the investors as well as market analysts. Recent years have not seen anything “revolutionary” from Apple. Some are even speculative that the brightest days are perhaps over for Apple. But how true is that? Is 2017 really going to be different? Is Apple going to be different this year? What’s the next big thing for Apple?
A remarkable history:
Talk about innovation, no company has ever revolutionized the mobile phone market as Apple once did. 10 years ago, when the first ever iPhone was released in the market, on January 9, 2007, it was a big hit. It has remained the most popular smartphone every released. Since then, it has remained a promising upward curve for Apple. There was never many doubts on what the next big thing for Apple would be. Some statistics to show how remarkable Apple has been on the market:
- The revenue of the company which was a mere 8 billion USD in the year 2004 grew to an impressive 230 billion USD by 2015.
- After Macintosh created a buzz in the personal computer segment, iPods were Apple’s first “non-computer” venture.
- 2007 was a big year for Apple as the iconic iPhone was first launched. The iPhone is still the major share in the company’s revenue contribution (around 60%). Till date, around a billion iPhones have been sold.
- 2010- the iPad was launched and millions of iPads were sold months after the launch.
- The iOS related revenue itself would account close to a whopping $1trillion.
Then what made Thiel say, “the age of Apple is over”?
In a New York Times interview, co-founder of PayPal remarked that the bright days of Apple are perhaps over. He, in fact, made this comment conveying the general fact that smartphone technologies are almost nearing a saturation. There is nothing more fancy about smartphones as we have already framed a picture of how a smartphone would be and there are countless models living up to that definition. So with iPhones still remaining the major part of Apple’s revenue, unless Apple truly innovates, brings back the “magic” like the first iPhone did on the market, this isn’t going to be a very bright year for Apple. Tim Cook hasn’t made any major releases recently. This is why many investors are getting skeptical about investing in Apple. In the year 2016 for the first time in Apple’s history, there was a decline in the revenue year after year. This remained same in all the quarters further adding to the investors’ doubts. In October 2016, there was a reported quarterly decline for the third consecutive time. Apple failed to meet its predictions with iPhone sales. Though the percentage of sales has seen a steady rise the figures are nowhere close to Apple’s predictions.
Was 2016 the end of Apple’s golden age?
The year began with a lot of rumors about speculated new releases from Apple. But not many of them materialized. Tim Cook, when asked about what’s the next big thing with Apple, kept his neutral remarks that good stuff is just around the corner like Apple always does. But 2016 hasn’t really seen much “Apple”. The spark it usually carried, the way iPhones ruled the market for a decade, it seemed to solely fade.
- There are several phones being released with cutting edge technology. In the beginning, yes, iPhone was the peak technology that smartphones ever saw. But the smartphone market evolved faster than iPhones did.
- iPads, Mac, Apple TV- they were all great as the firsts. But now with technology growing leaps and bounds, people want more. When there is more, someone comes up with some more! Apple has to buck up and grow, at a much faster pace than it is currently progressing.
- Apple’s new venture into Augmented Reality based glasses in association with Zeiss which is speculated to hit the market by 2017 or 2018 might be a good plus for the company.
- Bringing back the conventional “iPhone” charm and creating something truly magical with the iPhone 8 is the next big hope.
- Slashing down the prices of MacBook could be a way Apple can address its slow growth in the laptop segment as well.
2016 has been a mixed year for Apple. Not a good one- neither can it be called the “worst”. But it turned out to be a year that hit Apple hard making it realize that it is time to revolutionize. It is time to get back in action. So what’s the next big thing for Apple?
With the new year ahead, let us wait to hear what’s going to be new this year from Apple. Meanwhile, for all your iPhone and MacBook service requirements, you know where to go.