More than a few times during both tensures, Jobs bet the company that he and Woz built. The Mac. Apple Stores. The iPod. iTunes Music Store. Mac with Intel Inside. iPhone. App Stores. iPad. Each bet was bigger than the last and with every critical eyeball on every move Apple makes, every move was a big bet.
What’s the latest bet? Ian Sherr:
Apple’s betting the future on services
No, it is not. But members of the technorati elite politburo are drumming into our heads that Apple is shifting from hardware to Services (it’s not) and that Services will save the company from the demise of the iPhone (it won’t because iPhone isn’t going anywhere).
Last month, Apple CEO Tim Cook announced a new direction for his company.
No, he did not. Apple has had a Services business since the last century. The customer base has grown from a few million to more than a billion and Services has grown, too.
Move along. Nothing to see here.
Yet, the aforementioned technorati elite politburo members seem to think Apple is engaged in something totally new and different, and Apple Inc. being Apple, it’s ready to fail. Or, not. It all depends.
What’s the future hold?
Apple TV Plus, a video streaming service; Apple Arcade, a paid package of games; and Apple News Plus, a subscription service to articles from about 300 magazines and newspapers — they’re the future of Apple’s growth.
No, it is not.
Apple’s future is what Apple’s past has been– a multi-tiered business model where the total is greater than the sum of the parts. Apple’s billion-plus customer base means the company can bring more components to Services– itself already larger than Mac or iPad– but we’re talking profits, not revenue growth.
The days of heady iPhone growth are gone, but that does not mean Apple has given up on the cash cow. In fact, Apple’s real strength appears to be in breeding cash cows, and the collective herd help the company to rake in more profits than all competitors combined.
Apple is not betting the future on Services. Apple’s future is doing more of what it has been doing for many years. Expanding. After Jobs died in 2011, Apple introduced a number of products for the customer base and they appear to be doing well.
Apple Pay is the most used mobile payment service. Apple Watch is the smartwatch industry leader. Apple owns the wireless earbuds business with AirPods and Beats. Even Apple Music, a late starter to Spotify, has grown steadily and topped its competitor in the U.S. Streaming music, TV shows, and movies simply add to the Services mix (along with App Store subscriptions, AppleCare, and everything else that isn’t hardware).
Speaking of hardware, where would Services be without it?