Apple: finally making a play for riches at the bottom of the pyramid?

Apple’s iPhone 3GS is now available in India for less than 200 USD (Rs. 9999).

Image via Wikipedia

This represents a price reduction of 50% over the past year or so and might signal a change in strategy. Apple might be finally moving to tap the riches at the bottom of the pyramid and trying to gain a foothold in the fast growing smartphone market of India. As this article correctly points out, the iPhone 3GS is still a superior when compared to the low-end Android phones offered to the Indian consumer. Coupled with its ability to upgrade to IOS 6, Apple might finally have a winner.

Or this might just be another ‘inventory clearing exercise’ as Apple readies for the launch of the iPhone 5. Either way, one hopes that increased iPhone sales in India will lead to an improvement in the Apple Experience and service coverage available in India.

Smartphone Wars: iPhone Trade-Ins

 

 

On the heels of recent news that Samsung has overtaken Apple as the largest Smartphone manufacturer, one is seeing more aggressive marketing. There was a recent deal on Groupon in Hong Kong, which offered a Samsung Galaxy SIII in return for an iPhone 4S plus 90 US dollars. While this seems quite a steal, there were not many takers for this deal. This implies that either folks are not keen on the switch (iPhone 4 s to SIII), or that there are better (cheaper!) trade-in offers available in the Hong Kong market. Note that long-term contracts are not in vogue in this market, hence contract lock-in can be plausibly ruled out as the cause for low uptake of this offer.

 

Image via Groupon (Hong Kong)

 

History of iOS and Android

This infographic, by mylookout.com, details the history (release milestones) of the iOS and Android operating systems. The data includes release milestones, number of activated smartphones using each OS and app availability over time.

See the original infographic here.

The iPhone trails in China (too)

Samsung SGH-i400 smartphone

Image via Wikipedia

Close on the heels of a report that suggests that Apple is loosing the smartphone battle in India, Gartner reports that the iPhone has less than a third of the marketshare of Samsung in the much bigger smartphone market of China.

as Apple tries to build on its 7.5 percent share of the country’s smartphone sales. Samsung controlled 24.3 percent of the market for phones that can play videos and games, according to Gartner Inc.

 

When one considers that China is projected to become the world’s largest smartphone market next year, this should be a cause of worry.

Succeeding in China is important for Apple as shipments of smartphones in the country are projected to jump 52 percent this year to 137 million units, overtaking the U.S. for the first time as the world’s biggest market.

 

While analysts suggest that Apple’s low market share is due to its exclusive partnerships with the smaller two of three major carriers, this does not take into account the price differential between Samsung’s Android based offerings and the iPhone. One could expect that the reasons why the iPhone doesn’t rule in India also hold true in China.

Apple’s partnerships with China’s second- and third-largest carriers give it access to about 34 percent of the nation’s 988 million mobile users, while Samsung targeted the whole market.

 

As I wrote a six months ago, demographics alone can give Apple $68 billion in additional sales from emerging markets – but this is just the tip of the iceberg!

 

In the next 3 years, 400 million people are expected to buy cellphones in India alone. If Apple can get a large chunk of these consumers onto its ecosystem, the future cross-sell and up-sell opportunities will be immense.  There lie considerable riches at the bottom of the pyramid.

Moral of the story – The Exploitation of existing certainties has a potential $68 billion upside, but this pales in comparison to the potential of the Exploration of new opportunities. An ambidextrous approach could see Apple revenues grow many fold!

 

Read more at IPhone Fails to Gain China Share as Samsung Lead Triples: Tech – Bloomberg.

Linking business cards and LinkedIn profiles

LinkedIn has launched an updated CardMunch iPhone app. The app now allows users to scan a business card, add the details to their iPhone’s address book, enrich the information with data from the person’s LinkedIn profile, and take personalized notes.

For the first time, we’ll be connecting the physical world of business cards with the digital world of LinkedIn profiles, and helping millions of professionals everywhere take the world of contacts and phone numbers into the future of professional networking. We’ve also done a major re-haul of the CardMunch experience with particular focus on how we can make outbound professionals more successful and productive.

Image via LinkedIn

Read more at The LinkedIn Blog » Blog Archive LinkedIn’s New CardMunch iPhone App: Reinventing Business Cards «.

 

A link to the app is here.

Google Translate iPhone app now supports 5 more Indic languages

Google just announced that its Translate iPhone app will support five additional Indic languagesBengali, Gujarati, Kannada, Tamil and Telugu. While the Google’s quality of translation for all Indic languages is still quite poor, the support for an increasing number of languages must be lauded. These are sure steps towards the universal translator of lore!

Google Translate for iPhone now supports text translation among 63 languages, voice input in 17 of those languages, and text-to-speech in 24 of them.

Image via Google

Read more at Translate more Indic languages with the updated Google Translate for iPhone app – Official Google Mobile Blog.