25 Feb 2012

The Future of the iPhone: Impact of Carrier Subsidies

Apple iPhone 4S

Since its launch in 2007, the iPhone has consistently grown its presence in the market, behind Apple's marketing & ability to create a cult-ish following. Today, it has become the second largest smartphone platform in the industry. The smartphone industry itself has grown by nearly 50% over the last year. Looking at this, it's natural to assume that the iPhone will continue its growth trajectory, just like Android has. Not so fast, let's take a deeper look.

23 Feb 2012

Will Windows 8 Succeed: An Analysis of the Tablet & PC Markets

Windows 8 Metro UI

Long story short, no, I don't believe it will. Keep reading to find out why.

Microsoft has been marketing Windows 8 (due to release in Q4 2012) as a "no compromises" operating system for both PCs and Tablets. Sadly, this is false.

Windows 8 essentially targets the following markets:
1) Enterprise PC sales & upgrades
2) Consumer PC sales & upgrades
3) Tablets with x86 Architecture (using similar processors as PCs)
4) Tablets with ARM Architecture (using similar processors as iPads, Android Tablets, etc.)

Let's tackle these markets individually.

Why Android shipments matter as much as sales

Android Shipments

We see a lot of research reports every day, showing market shares in the fast moving smartphone and tablet markets. These figures are based on number of units shipped to retailers and not actual consumer sales. In most cases, Apple does release actual sales figures as they have their own retail stores and thus, direct access to that data.

I've heard a lot of talk from pundits who claim that Apple is actually ahead of Android because those numbers are shipping figures. Then, I usually hear the same people claiming that Nokia is actually doing well because they're shipping 1.3 million Lumias in 7 markets.

Let's have a closer look at the basis behind these figures, shall we.

How to fix RIM & Nokia's Market Share Slide

RIM Nokia

After practically inventing the smartphone, RIM & Nokia have been decimated over the last couple of years. Their market share is in shambles (Together, they hold roughly 20% of the global smartphone market, down from about 80%). Stephen Elop and Thorsten Heins seem to be floundering (in completely different ways, strangely). In short, they're not doing well, and their shareholders are suffering for their management's mistakes.