Yes! there is a huge market for the commoditised products in the developing world. And many times the quantum of sale from such products can offset the low volume high priced premium products. Today in India the loest level labourers earning a mere $2 a day, can be seen engaged in hour-long conversations with their near and dear ones on their mobiles. These devices are not those hi-fi Iphones or Blackberries but some unbranded products coming from China, serving their purpose at the price they can afford.
The coomoditization of PCs has helped the student community in developing countries like India , where they can now afford to have their own desktop/laptop instead of waiting for their turn at the college lab for the precious computer time.
Like the Fshion industry is driven by innovation all year around, but the consumers for this designwear are only a select few. The masses wear only the commoditized designs.
So actually the maases are getting benefitted when the pace of innovation increase as they get better products much sooner at affordable prices.
No company or product is above commoditization, and to think so is foolish. The best anybody can hope for is to stave this off for as long as possible. I think Apple is making a good move by getting involved on the low end of the market. There are still plenty of consumers not able to spend big dollars on the latest models. These people will also spend money on apps and still bring in a revenue stream.
I'm a big fan of having a choice in the market when it comes to the low-end versus high-end. I can certainly understand a company that wants to create a high-value product that holds it value--luxury cars is a great example. I think Apple can continue to succeed with this strategy but they'll have to sacrifice a product here and there, such as the phone you mention that is priced competitively. But it's tough to see which way the market will trend, and developing new products at the pace Apple has to to maintain leadership will eventually lead to a price war.
the premium price that we usually pay for the new product is for the niche technologies so that the company can recover the RnD cost asap. And the price difference between a new product and an old product makes sure that the company can cater to a wider range of customers. By doing so, the company puts more pressure on its supply chain as the parts used in an upgrades version are almost same/similar to the previous version. So, doesn't it make sense to analyze how to free up the supply chain by stop producing one/two generation older products?
@jbond,Interestingly, after I wrote the article I saw a report about Apple that the company may have to lower the price of its iPad tablets. The report (iPad 2 price slash incoming analyst insist) may not be correct but it points to a possible trend. Some other analysts have questioned the veracity of the report. We'll find out soon how true this is. Knowing Apple, it's a challenge that must be countered.
I really like your definition of what a commodity is with regards to declining price trends. I think most of us know that if we can wait 6-9 months after a company introduces a new product, we will have the benefit of that price erosion usually in excess of 20-25%. I waited for my first digital camera, Dimage, announced at $2500, and bought one about 8 months later for $999.00. 6MP. Can you say WooHoo? Alas! My new Samsung Galaxy II Skyrocket only has 8MP rear and a measly front facing camera at just a few MP. I can't wait for my next phone with a side facing camera of 16MP. Should be out in about 6 months at $299.00.
Jbond. I have several expensive toys that are sooooooo 10 minutes ago! You are absolutely right. Product life cycles as released seem to be getting shorter and shorter...especially the hand-held goodies.
EBN Dialogue enables and encourages you to participate in live chats with notable leaders and luminaries. Not only editors and journalists, but the entire EBN community is able to comment and ask questions. Listed below are upcoming and archived chats.
Thailand Stages a Comeback Join EBN contributor Jennifer Baljko on Thursday August 23, 2012, at 11:00 a.m. EST for a live chat on how electronic manufacturers in Thailand have shored up their supply chain to reduce the impact of future natural disasters.
Microsoft Surface: Potential Winners & Losers What are the implications for the electronics industry supply chain of Microsoft Corp.'s decision to launch its own tablet PC? Join industry veteran and EE Times' systems and OEM expert Rick Merritt on Tuesday, July 3, at 12:00 pm EDT for a Live Chat on this subject.
Join EBN contributor Jennifer Baljko on Thursday August 23, 2012, at 11:00 a.m. EST for a live chat on how electronic manufacturers in Thailand have shored up their supply chain to reduce the impact of future natural disasters.
Peter Drucker famously said "Trying to predict the future is like trying to drive down a country road at night with no lights while looking out the back window." Yet in the razor's-edge world of electronics—with a lean supply chain and just-in-time demands—the need to know the future is vital.
While no one really can accurately predict the future, we can take guidance from another Drucker saying which is the best way to predict the future is to create it.
You've heard the saying "the No. 1 supply chain risk is your people." That hasn't always been the case. But today's complex global supply chain requires a new type of multitalented employee. It's one who understands, finance, marketing, economics, is savvy with technology, graceful with relationships and can think analytically.
Where are these people? Are universities properly preparing the next generation supply chain professionals? How do train your existing workforce for these new, demanding positions?
Brian Fuller, editor-in-chief of EBN, will lead a 60-minute Avnet Velocity panel discussion that will ask and answer these and other questions swirling around today's supply-chain talent challenges.