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back to article Apple CEO Cook: 'We're not in the junk business'

Apple CEO Tim Cook has defended his company's strategy of sticking to the high end of the device market – read "expensive" – rather than competing at the low-cost, low-margin low end. "There's always a large junk part of the market," Cook told Bloomberg Businessweek in a wide-ranging interview on Thursday. "We're not in the junk …

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Anonymous Coward

Not sure why the car analogies always come out. But i'd say that Apple at the moment is more like a Lexus or some other premium brand that isn't quite as prestigious as a BMW.

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Anonymous Coward

Going with the car analogy I would call them more the Reliant of IT, small user %, cheaply made, fanatical fanbase with some serious design flaws

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Facepalm

Hey speaking of junk

Will these iPhones run Apples own comedy map software or are they sticking with the professionals?

And has everyone missed the fact that Apple has been forced to apologise more times than a Lib Dem leader. Gosh, just found another. And we mustn't forget the apology for apologising wrong.

Apple - the comedy gift that just keeps on giving.

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Mindless hype...

I wouldn't even go that far. Apple isn't a luxury brand really. They're just a PC brand with a little bit of extra "polish". There's some wood veneer and perhaps some leather upholstery over the same parts that everyone else uses.

Apple is much more like Lincoln. That's a slightly tweaked Ford.

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Nah, Reliant made some nice stuff, the Scimitar for one... I'm thinking a cross between ZIL, 1970s Alfa Romeo & FSO somehow managing to combine the worst of all. Horribly outdated & horrible to use, yet overpriced and 'exclusive' while having the mechanical resilience of an Alfasud left out in a summer shower.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Mindless hype...

"I wouldn't even go that far. Apple isn't a luxury brand really. They're just a PC brand with a little bit of extra "polish". ... Apple is much more like Lincoln. That's a slightly tweaked Ford."

Your analogy might be more apt than you intended. Just as Apple uses Intel CPUs and Seagate hard drives, Ford also doesn't make all the parts of their cars. They commonly source Brembo brakes, Getrag transmissions, Firestone tires, etc. etc. So does that mean they're not a legitimate car manufacturer? Hardly.

So how much of a computer do you want Apple to design and/or manufacture before you consider them a legitimate computer company/brand? They already have their own operating system and design their own cases, motherboards, cooling systems, power adapters, keyboards, mice, trackpads, etc. Show me one single other computer company that does all that. If you tear down any Dell or HP desktop or laptop, it's 99% commodity parts that they didn't design, manufacture, or even bother to brand. Instead of calling Apple a slightly tweaked Dell, it might be more accurate to call Dell a wannabe Apple.

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Comparisons to the German Automotive Industry are unhelpful

The hubris of Apple reminds me more of IG Farben. As you may remember, the Investor Fanbois were quite sure that Auschwitz was a Labor Camp, not a Death Camp.

Not anonymous because ... I would not work for these arrogant soul-less bastards on a dare. Buy something from them ? Well, I'll be coy and let the Focus Groups figure that one out. They have a 50% chance of being right ... right ? (just nod your head, Linus)

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Anonymous Coward

More like a cross between BMW, Porsche and Tesla if you want to continue with the car analogies.

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I disagree

Apple provide premium tech products, for people who aren't too bothered about tech, have the money and just want the damn thing to work.

If you're willing to hunt about you can always find something cheaper or better or more innovative - but they have that sweet spot they sit in where their customers haver confidence with them and they deliver well.

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FAIL

You're right Timmy...you don't make junk. Just ask your cat.

Even Cats like the new premium iPhoneS.

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/article-2425504/The-video-shows-CAT-unlock-new-iPhone-5S-paw-used-instead-fingerprint.html

So much for the crack "security" of the finger(paw)print reader.

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The security of the paw scanner isn't in question in the article. They scanned the kitty's foot, then the phone unlocked after recognising it. It wasn't as if the cat had unlocked the phone after it was set up to read a man finger.

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This post has been deleted by its author

WTF?

Re: You're right Timmy...you don't make junk. Just ask your cat.

"Cat paw prints are as unique as our fingerprints; here they registered a (unique) paw print and used it to unlock an iPhone 5S. There's no security problem at all with that, in fact it's a testament to the quality of the scanner."

Given that there are no uniquely identifiable features on a cat's paw to distinguish it from the next cat, this says two things about Apple's new iphone's security. 1. It works just fine for cats to be able to unlock it, and 2. it is stump dumb when it comes to security.

Oh yes... Your post says just one thing about you. You're a stump dumb apple fanbois of the worst kind.

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Re: You're right Timmy...you don't make junk. Just ask your cat.

@croc

I can't work out if you are trolling or just thick.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: You're right Timmy...you don't make junk. Just ask your cat.

That you read the Daily Mail speaks volumes about you already.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: You're right Timmy...you don't make junk. Just ask your cat.

Both...

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Wow, way to miss the point.

The Daily Mail, with the help of aforementioned cat, was giving the iPhone "the paw" in lieu of giving the iPhone "the finger".

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Anonymous Coward

Re: You're right Timmy...you don't make junk. Just ask your cat.

Did you even read it - they registered the cats paw print specifically - it's not as if a cat was able to just casually unlock the phone registered to it's owner.

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Devil

BMW??Mercedes??

"it compared itself to luxury carmakers Mercedes-Benz and BMW in a blurb posted on its new online retail website:"

Mr Tim Cook's Reality Distortion Field its hilarious! I'm sure he knows that BMW and Mercedes innovate and change the design at each new generation of their car lines...

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Anonymous Coward

Re: BMW??Mercedes??

Er... are you talking about the same car companies that commonly sell cars for 5+ years in a row that are almost literally identical to each other? The 3 series was effectively unmodified from 1992 to 1998... then from 1999 to 2005... then from 2006 to 2011...

Apple's 2 year design cycle looks blisteringly fast in comparison.

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Devil

Re: BMW??Mercedes??

"Apple's 2 year design cycle looks blisteringly fast in comparison."

Design cycle?? Entertain yourself with this video and Apple's "design cycle" LOL

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=B-vZtBzoEs0

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Anonymous Coward

Re: BMW??Mercedes??

"Er... are you talking about the same car companies that commonly sell cars for 5+ years in a row that are almost literally identical to each other? The 3 series was effectively unmodified from 1992 to 1998... then from 1999 to 2005... then from 2006 to 2011...

Apple's 2 year design cycle looks blisteringly fast in comparison."

Are you really comparing a car with a shitty phone? Can you spot the idiocy?

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Anonymous Coward

That photo?!

Why on earth is "mysterious" man-in-black thrusting his hips towards his lime green phone?

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I'm in two minds

On the one hand, Apple have built the brand, and buying into that brand isn't cheap. That's fine, but it's a very hardware orientated mindset. The iPad and iPhone might not be commodities, but all the services Apple wishes to sell around them most certainly are!

Perhaps Apple calculates the profits on its hardware will always outweigh anything it can earn by expanding its services to a greater audience but, in the long term, I suspect Amazon will be able to buy and offer the same services (and content) more cheaply. In that sense, I find Amazon just a little bit scary*.

Then again, perhaps I'm in the wrong mindset..... I think services are the wave of the future because. lets face it, you can't beat a bit of money for old rope (at least if it's you that's selling the old rope). In other words, the same principle that made Ross Perot considerably richer than the rest of us. Perhaps in the world of mass market devices, things are changing?

* Because world domination isn't necessarily a healthy thing, at least for the dominated.

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Such big markets....

"Fortunately, both of these markets are so big," he said, "and there's so many people that care and want a great experience from their phone or their tablet, that Apple can have a really good business."

So if the market is SOOOOO big, then why is Apple continuously dragging everyone before the courts in these screwball lawsuits over stupidly obvious patents? The more I read Tim Cook's statements, the more I hear the sound of George W. Bush's moron tones.

I had a "Bushisms" calendar back in 2007....maybe there should be one for Tim Cook too.

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Anonymous Coward

Whatever

What an idiot. Pretending cheaper phones are somehow inferior.

Pick up a £200 Nexus4 and it's 10x better than any Apple phone and a third of the price..

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Re: Whatever

I dunno about ten times better - but it's certainly just as good (subjective, but it's more phone than I ever need), feels just as solid (sort of subjective, but hell, it does *not* feel cheap - it's very nice in the hand), and costs far less (entirely objective).

Nexus 5 aught to be interesting if the LG G2 benchmarks and battery life results are anything to go by. If they can keep the cost below £300 it'll be a barnstorming little device.

And you can scan local wifi networks with it without an £80 dongle and app, natch.

Steven R

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Whatever

"Pick up a £200 Nexus4 and it's 10x better than any Apple phone and a third of the price.."

Spoken like the same sort of person who claims that his Ford Fiesta is just as good as any Ferrari because it gets him from point A to point B just as well, given speed limits and whatnot.

I have a Nexus 4 and an iPhone 5. I am very impressed that the Nexus 4 is as good as it is for its price point but to say it's as good as an iPhone 5 is disingenuous. The screen is not nearly as good (color calibration/saturation is obviously inferior), the camera is not nearly as good (pictures are often blurry and washed-out), and the battery life is not as good.

So yes, you pay extra for the iPhone, but you get a better screen, better camera, better battery life, and comparable performance in a package that's much smaller, thinner, and lighter.

If I had to own just one phone and buy it with my own money, I might well choose the Nexus, but I'm not going to claim that it's as good as the iPhone, much less better...

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Joke

Re: Whatever

"So yes, you pay extra for the iPhone, but you get a better screen, better camera, better battery life, and comparable performance in a package that's much smaller, thinner, and lighter."

So who says those things are what makes it a better buy?

And besides, you have no taste.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Whatever

it clearly is not 10x better at 1/3 the price - firstly your maths is off, secondly the iPhone has a much better camera / flash, the iPhone has a finger print sensor, is better made etc. etc. It's just not a like for like comparison and think you would be hard pressed to get any non Apple haters or Android zealots to admit it was even 'as good'.

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Re: Whatever

I have both an Iphone 5, and a Nexus 4.

You are wrong, the N4 isn't 10 x better in anyway.

It's not 10x faster.

It doesn't have 10x the battery life.

Its screen isn't 10x better.

It only comes in 16GB.

Camera isn't 10x as good, in fact it's not as good at all.

It doesn't do Bluetooth well, and that's saying something as the Iphone's not great at it either, but it's better than the N4.

It does have NFC for when someone finds a use for it.

The N4 is twice as good as the Samsung S3, which it was half the price of though.

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Anonymous Coward

"Our primary objective is to sell a great phone and provide a great experience, and we figured out a way to do it at a lower cost."

Translation: We repackaged last year's technology and knocked a few bucks off the price, so we're only making 250% profit instead of the usual 300%.

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Trollface

Re: only making 250% profit instead of the usual 300%.

But shirley, last years tech is cheaper now. And plastic cases are certainly cheaper to make than machined and poorly anodised aluminium?

Probably gone up to 350%

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Cook is right but, given up?

It shows they have given up on Market share, at one point it looked if Apple would roll up Smartphone like they did portable music player, Now the focus is on brand power and being able to sell at good margins like they are able with PC's ( and no body else is).

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Cook is right but, given up?

In 2013 haven't they increased marketshare in USA? And iPhone is the best selling handset in UK.

Perhaps they've only given up on market share in low margin economies?

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Very unappealing

I wouldn't be caught dead with my hands on Tim Cook's junk.

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The post is required, and must contain letters Re: Very unappealing

That image of Tim Cook's junk cupped in your hands is one that will haunt my dreams for many a year.

Now where did I put the mindbleach?

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Unhappy

But then why does it look like junk?

I am looking for a new phone, but honestly, I would have preferred to buy an iPhone 5 rather than the new iPhone 5C.

Maybe I am too suspicious, but it feel as if the reason the iPhone 5 got replaced by the iPhone 5C is that otherwise, people would have bought the iPhone 5 instead of the 5S. Now, if you want an iPhone that looks good, you have to shell out for the 5S.

Maybe I'll go for the 4S instead…

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Anonymous Coward

Re: But then why does it look like junk?

Just the opposite for me... I will be buying the iPhone 5S but wish it had a plastic case like the 5C...

The mixture of metal and glass on the back of the 5/5S looks stupid to me... like they slapped a metal plate on it just so they could claim it was a premium device because it's "made out of metal." Give me a nice, plastic, shatter-proof, impact-resistant plastic case any day.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: But then why does it look like junk?

There's no glass on the back, just metal.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: But then why does it look like junk?

What do you think the shiny strips are, above and below the metal? Glassy metal?

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Anonymous Coward

Re: But then why does it look like junk?

Why would anyone buy a 5 when there was a 5S for essentially the same price - you do not have to use the finger print sensor if you do not want to yet it's got other upgrades, looks the same and pretty much the same price. The reality is no-one would buy the 5 once the 5S was out - so they spin the 5 into the 5C - drop the price $100 instead.

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Are there lines outside the Apple stores a day early in the UK too?

It's all about demand, Apple doesn't need to join the race to the bottom, with a growing customer base and continued demand for their products. Here in the US, a used iPhone 4 has a higher resale price than some Androids phones new street price. Its all about growing their customer base and introducing more people into their sticky ecosystem.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Are there lines outside the Apple stores a day early in the UK too?

Apple are selling plenty of phones and making decent cash doing it. They may only have perhaps 20% of the market (depends which country / worldwide etc.) but make 80% of the profit - not such a bad idea?

Everyone else is going to be caught spiralling to zero margins - selling Google phones and Google will be the ones smiling at the end of the day as Samsung, HTC, Sony all make pennies per handset or end up selling at a loss just to sell them.

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Anonymous Coward

Saying you don't want to conquer the whole market is a good way to make your share price slump.

Way to go genius, you just created a whole load of shareholder value. What a numpty.

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Is it just me?

Reading all the comments on articles about Smartphones I have to keep asking myself why people seem to be so obsessive about the picky details for a damned phone.

I know they all try to shoehorn in a bazillion features these days but just how are you meant to use most of them on a screen smaller than your hand? If you want to quickly catch up on emails then yes, that's fine. Or else maybe check to see what time the next train/bus is to see if you have time for a swift pint but beyond that? Music/Movie editing, I think not....Remote management of a Data Cantre,....Really? Those are what laptops/netbooks are for (even at a stretch a 10" tablet although you lose a lot of screen real estate for the keyboard).

If you want to treat it as a status symbol then fine, just don't be surprised if your concept of it's status/value is different to everyone else.

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Just because something is expensive

doesn't mean it's not junk.

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Go

Watch AAPL ding a hole in coming years.

That attitude is fine so long as you have customers i.e. middle class, and possibly some rich people; however that market is going to have serious cash flow problems in future, so the lower end will clean up at Apples' cost! The rise of the discount store is just a hint of the problems to come, and not only working class visit them!

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Anonymous Coward

The fact is ownership of an iPhone is about the same cost as an equivalent Android in the longer run. For example they are worth more second hand which makes the next one cheaper and typically last longer. Add to that Applecare now even covers 2 incidents of accidental damage (over 2 years) with a £50-60 excess - so smash your phone up and get a new one.

Very interesting way to keep the users happy and keep the value up - very much like BMW / Mercedes etc.

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