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« Smartphone Stats: Full Year 2017 Top 10, OS Installed Base and Everything Else You Ever Wanted | Main | The Helsinki Hostage Summit, Putin’s Puppet Trump, and my Working Theory of How the White House was Sold (and joke songs at end) »

May 23, 2018

Comments

Jim Glu

Oh Per...you funny person. There are 7 billion people in the world, of which only 600M or so own iPhones. There is a vast disparity in income between the average iPhone owner and the average Android.

Tomi will hopefully start participating again - but I don't think I'm amiss of the rules in pointing out that Apple is quite different in how they approach the market than Tomi's "unit share as long as it's profitable, is everything".

Mind you, when you compare Apple against other manufacturers...Apple has been in second place for years in terms of market share...only behind Samsung. Huawei and the BSD(?) group may both eventually surpass Apple, leaving Apple in fourth. Fourth place in unit market share of the world's largest ever global market isn't so bad.

Tomi long ago stated that Apple's existence wasn't in doubt. There is no "Apple's share will fall so low that developers will abandon the platform, and users along with the developers". That's a pipe dream, not sound analysis.

Apple's profits, though, do matter to more than just Apple's shareholders. There is a good reason TSMC is able to put out 7nm chips this year and Samsung wasn't able to. Nor anybody else. It is Apple's ability to guarantee a level of sales of these expensive chips that made the expensive investment in new fabs worth it.

Apple's money has let Apple not merely keep up, but keep ahead of the entire rest of the industry combined. Apple doesn't just create the chips. Apple creates the entire rest of the chain to useful apps that take advantage of the speed and features. The augmented reality and machine learning enhanced apps are already here....but in their infancy. Much much much more is to come.

3Trillion CoreML instructions a second and 1/9th the power draw. Even Google isn't going to ignore that power...you'll see their apps coming soon that will do things on iPhones that can't be done on lesser chips. They won't be able to help themselves.

No worries...there are and will be plenty of great apps doing the things that most people need on Android. But the best hardware will be where the best apps are. By controlling the chips, the OS, the frameworks, the distribution....and combined with Apple's amazing relationship with developers...it all comes together in real useful innovation.

That can't happen without enormous investments that are funded by selling actually profitable devices.

Enough to overcome Android's unit sales? Not even close. Nor will Apple's sales every come even remotely close to selling more than Android. But Apple has MORE than enough, FAR more than enough to keep it's happy niche going for as long as Android.

That's why Apple's ecosystem profitably matters. Not in scoring the race. Google and Apple won the mobile OS race. Google first place, Apple second. Everyone else dead (or close enough as doesn't matter).

Samsung and Apple have won the manufacturing war with Samsung 1st and Apple second. All who were in the race back in 2007 are dead, acquired, or marginal now.

Think profitability doesn't matter? Then explain why Android tablets are doing so poorly in getting developers to support the tablet format and not just the phone. No money is there to support the development effort.

Why have Android smartphones sputtered for years even having beat Apple to the market by almost 2 years? There just isn't that much money in the Android ecosystem. Not nearly enough people who buy an Android phone would also buy a smartwatch.

Meanwhile, Apple make so much more money from it's services to it's iPhone base than any Android manufacturer makes from their phones. Why? Because Apple customers are so much better to have....for everyone.

How is it that Qualcomm didn't put out a new watch chip for two years....and it's FINALLY out chip offers nothing but a few extra abilities...but no speed improvements or changes to the core cpu part? Because there isn't sales to fund the development effort. With all it's vast superiority in unit sales....it is Apple that has scale where it counts on the forefront of innovation.

Why would the makers of Fortnight develop for iOS first even though they pay 30% to Apple and 0% to Google? Because even with the 30% "Apple Tax" there is far more money for them to make from iPhone customers. And more iPhones are able to run their game than Android phones.

Money does matter. Just not in declaring who the winner in unit market sales.

Per "wertigon" Ekström

@Jim:

And yet despite all their $$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$, Apple cannot keep up with Android on features and software. Not by a long shot.

Apple does have an impressive war chest. So did the Soviets in Afghanistan. It doesn't mean that much, really. Apple has a lot of raw power, but their enemy fights in the hills with nimbler movement. If you watch Game of Thrones, Apple is the Mountain vs a much more nimble and agile Prince Oberyn.

Never underestimate Apple, because it can beat your face to a pulp in the blink of an eye. But invincible? Hardly.

As for the Bionic A12, geek bench scores show Apple has some improvements over competitors (28%), but lose out in multi-threaded apps and 3D rendering. Some of this improvement comes from the iOS upgrade though. The A12 does simply destroy the Snapdragon 845 in single threaded performance though, that I will give you.

However, the closest competitor to the Xs performance wise is the OnePlus 6 that starts at $500 - That's *half* the price, for roughly 75-80% of the performance.

So yeah, you can get a 1/4th performance boost for twice the price. Definitely. Do you really *need* that though, or would you rather buy yourself *and* your significant other a new smartphone at the same price?

CPU speed is good enough on Mobile and has been for five years now, I still replace mine every other year but I buy a $300-$400 device nowadays, not top-of-the-line models.

BennyDover

”Apple cannot keep up with Android on features”

What features? Android does not have features that iPhone does not have.
Software. IPhone has all the software. Give examples.

BennyDover

Apple is The Nimble one and you still do not get it. They do not need to wait for the committee to make decisions. They can move fast were they want to.

Google has to wait Quallcomm and the OEMs has to wait Quallcom and Google. Quallcom has to wait for Google and Quallcom has to wait for the OEMs to make the orders and maybe pay for their orders someday.

Good example is what Apple is doing with ML and their ISP (image signal processors). Apple moves faster than the competition and makes fantastic things just because they can do what they need and want. Comparing Apple to Soviet Union is idiotic when the Android is the one that is the Soviet Union.

BennyDover

Apple iPhone user base is way more bigger than 600 million. Apple has 1 Billion customers.

Per "wertigon" Ekström

@Benny:

If you used a $500 Android phone you'd know what features I am talking about. :)

BennyDover

“If you used a $500 Android phone you'd know what features I am talking about.”

I’ve used Samsung, HTC and Alcatel phones that are 400€-650€ and I can tell you that crappiness is not a feature that Apple wants to implement.

Jim Glu

Come on Per. Each OS has features the other doesn't have. And each of them copy from the other as well. And of COURSE iPhone's performance is a function of BOTH Apple creating the CPU's/GPU's AND the operating system. That's how Apple kept ahead of Android in performance all those years where Android ran their CPU's hotter and threw in many more cores and RAM....and STILL couldn't match Apple's buttery smooth multi-touch interactions and scrolling.

And "Android" isn't A thing. It's ten thousand different manufacturer's selling a hodgepodge of different takes on a smartphone. The vast majority is cheap crap. But even at the top where there are nice phones....very few of those phones are available for sell across the entire world...and those that are, are not much cheaper than iPhones.

Meanwhile, Apple's iPhone's have been designed to be secure. The ability to run any software from any app store is a huge security fail. It sure is a "feature Android has that Apple doesn't" but it comes at the cost of security. Android makes Windows look secure.

But normal people don't care about security. There are enough that do, though, to keep Apple happily in business.

It's not that your thinking is totally wrong. Take a look. Android has 80% of the install base of smartphones. No one is arguing that Android has won by a HUGE landslide for most popular mobile platform on earth. Most popular COMPUTING platform on earth.

Per "wertigon" Ekström

@Benny:

Top three features Android Pie has over iOS, IMO:

1. DND mode (which activates in a genius way btw )
2. Google Assistant (lightyears ahead of Siri)
3. Adaptive battery (Gives even LONGER battery)

iOS has yet to show anything even remotely better. Add to this that Android and PWAs will take increased focus in App development more and more...

Yeah, the heat is building in there. :)

BennyDover

1) Do not disturp is very clever in the iOS 12 and connected to Siri it is even better
2) Google Assistant is spying you and fills your Android phone with tons of ads so no.
3) Adaptive battery is a marketing term and iOS had bettet things since iOS 10.

Your 3 points don’t get you ahead of iOS. iOS is superior when it comes to battery efficiency it also consumes much less memory and is superior to manage the processor power.

Google assistant is no go. First it for example does not understand my language. Siri connects now with applications in a way that Google does not. Plus I can easily build routines. Frederico Viticci (duckduckgo it) can tell you more about it. He is the specialist.

And yeah power managment is a compination of software, hardware and chemistry and Apple beats everybody in that.

BennyDover

I forgot to mention the Machine Learning. Your iPhone is a machine learning what you do. Google is google spying what you do.

Jim Glu

iOS has do not disturb mode and was enhanced further with iOS 12.

Google was LATE with Assistant, Apple beat them by years. As for "light years ahead" that's a gross overstatement. Annnnd....Google brought their assistant to the iPhone. Same for Alexa. iPhones have great battery life and AI under the hood to make it so is just table stakes. There's AI enhancing most everything these days. Of course, the new iPhones have this amazing new chip to make on device AI faster than anything Android phones have access to.

I have many times listed what I like about iPhone features that don't exist in Android.

Clearly there are plenty or reasons for people to choose one platform over the other. Thing is....NOTHING that Google or Apple put out this year is changing the equation much at all.

Jim Glu

Let's consider too once exclusive features: wireless charging and touchID.

Android phones had wireless charging for years before Apple added it. I'm only now just beginning to SOMEWHAT like that feature on my iPhoneX. Android fans raved about how great it was. "Nobody" switched platforms because of it.

The iPhone 5s was the first phone with a WORKABLE finger biometric. I instantly loved it and knew I'd never buy another phone without it. The vast vast majority of Android users never put a login on their phone anyway (same for iPhone users). So it was no big deal to them. It's very big deal to anybody who HAD to enter a pass code every time they opened their phone.

"Nobody" changed phone platforms because of this feature.

The "Android vs iOS" decision was a thing the first year or two. It's long been past...now you either buy Android or you buy iPhones. And you wait for your platform of choice to get whatever nifty feature the other platform gets first.

When sales of the iPhone 6 went off the charts....some of us (me included) thought that Android users were switching in much larger numbers. Nope. Turns out it was just iPhone users upgrading earlier so they could finally get the large screen that Android users had as an options for years earlier.

Nobody publishes the numbers of how much of a percentage switchers actually make up. I'm sure it's small. And according to Tim Cook, it's been 2 to 1 in favor of the iPhone for the last few years. But he doesn't say how many...and 2 to 1 of say, 1Million switchers, wouldn't be that much of an impact on market share.

Jim Glu

Hey, we finally have some numbers on the premium segment: https://appleinsider.com/articles/18/09/19/apple-sold-43-of-all-phones-priced-above-400-globally-in-q2-earned-majority-of-handset-profits

iPhones have 43% of the unit sales of $400 And above smartphones...and 88% of phones $800 and up.

Samsung’s latest and greatest...tanking yet again

BennyDover

@Jim

I posted that link earlier

Jim Glu

Sorry for the double post, Benny.

BennyDover

This is going to be horrible for the Apple...
https://iphone.appleinsider.com/articles/18/09/20/eager-customers-line-up-for-iphone-xs-apple-watch-series-4-as-first-shipments-arrive

Nobody wants that in front of their shops. 😆

Per "wertigon" Ekström

@Benny:

Already said Apple phones will sell, at a minimum, 200M units this year, and a realistic maximum is 225M units.

There are always lines for new Apple hardware. That they exist this year as well proves nothing. Stop wasting everyones time with meaningless drivel. :)

Although you call that a proper queue? https://www.telegraph.co.uk/technology/apple/iphone/11106696/Fans-queue-outside-Apples-London-stores-for-new-iPhone-6.html

Murphy

Per Ekström

"Stop wasting everyones time with meaningless drivel"

Really!

'Apple only sell more Macs now because of iOS devs'
'Apple got into trouble for trying to sell cheap Macs'
'I have a theory.... I have no proof....'
Orcs
Elves

(I can find plenty more if you like)

Per "wertigon" Ekström

It's really funny about the latest iPhone.

I hear a lot of people saying "Yeah, the latest iPhone is kinda meh... But I'll get it anyhow, because it's Apple"

... ARDF in full force still I see. :)

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Available for Consulting and Speakerships

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    Tomi Ahonen is a bestselling author whose twelve books on mobile have already been referenced in over 100 books by his peers. Rated the most influential expert in mobile by Forbes in December 2011, Tomi speaks regularly at conferences doing about 20 public speakerships annually. With over 250 public speaking engagements, Tomi been seen by a cumulative audience of over 100,000 people on all six inhabited continents. The former Nokia executive has run a consulting practise on digital convergence, interactive media, engagement marketing, high tech and next generation mobile. Tomi is currently based out of Helsinki but supports Fortune 500 sized companies across the globe. His reference client list includes Axiata, Bank of America, BBC, BNP Paribas, China Mobile, Emap, Ericsson, Google, Hewlett-Packard, HSBC, IBM, Intel, LG, MTS, Nokia, NTT DoCoMo, Ogilvy, Orange, RIM, Sanomamedia, Telenor, TeliaSonera, Three, Tigo, Vodafone, etc. To see his full bio and his books, visit www.tomiahonen.com Tomi Ahonen lectures at Oxford University's short courses on next generation mobile and digital convergence. Follow him on Twitter as @tomiahonen. Tomi also has a Facebook and Linked In page under his own name. He is available for consulting, speaking engagements and as expert witness, please write to tomi (at) tomiahonen (dot) com

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