Remember “Peak Apple”? Maybe you haven’t heard the phrase so much lately.
Punters are paying the Apple Tax and it’s primarily because Apple has done exactly what it did before … only in a bigger package.
Kantar’s smartphone market share numbers for Q1 show the Apple iPhone 6 Plus seized 44% of the US phablet market in only its second full quarter, with 43 per cent citing the screen size as their main reason for purchase. But because the supersized slabmobe segment now accounts for over 20 per cent of the US market, up from 6 per cent, Apple is profiting.
Steve Jobs refused to increase the size of the iPhone, but Apple has caught the market’s changing tastes just in time. Phones are now routinely big (5 inches or larger), and nobody really calls them "phablets" any more. It's the new normal.
How galling it must be to be an Android ODM and cram in interesting new features, only for punters to flood back to Apple, for doing the same thing it’s always done. The iPhone still uses the same stone-age UI it did nine years ago, with only a lick of paint.
Kantar’s numbers don’t indicate that a major migration over from Android is taking place - which some pundits have been confidently asserting. In fact, the number “switching” to iOS from Android fell from a year ago. Android still takes 58.1 per cent of the US market compared to iOS’s 36.5 per cent.
A summary of the survey can be found over here.
The quarter doesn’t include sales of flagships from Samsung and HTC, which entered the market in April. HTC has just reported its weakest April in six years, suggesting that sales of its One M9 flagship are off to a very slow start. ®