Category Archives: ipod

Steve Jobs Tells All

Steve JobsFortune has published a series of excerpts from an exclusive interview with Apple founder, Steve Jobs who reveals among other things, the keys to the company’s success and the prospects of Apple without him. Any one who reads this blog knows I’m a huge fan of Apple. They are the complete package – great products, friendly service, and brilliant marketing.

On the iPhone: “We all had cellphones. We just hated them, they were so awful to use. The software was terrible. The hardware wasn’t very good. We talked to our friends, and they all hated their cellphones too. Everybody seemed to hate their phones. And we saw that these things really could become much more powerful and interesting to license. It’s a huge market. I mean a billion phones get shipped every year, and that’s almost an order of magnitude greater than the number of music players. It’s four times the number of PCs that ship every year.

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Filed under Apple, Branding, Business, Cell phone, Design, innovation, iPhone, ipod, marketing, Packaging, Public Relations, Selling, Technology

2007 Top Ten Posts at BIG Marketing

Another year coming to a close and everyone is putting out their top ten lists, so here are the top ten posts read here at BIG Marketing. A sincere thanks to all of you who have supported this blog in 2007. Interacting with you through this medium is such a joy for me. Cheers and Happy New Year!

  1. Facebook, The Right Way to Design a Social Networking Site
  2. It Pays to be a Penguin
  3. Revolutionary Pen-Size Computer Uses Bluetooth Technology
  4. The Starbucks Experience Wins Over Coffee Every Time
  5. Plenty of Fish Founder Rakes in Google Ad Dough
  6. iPod In-Ear Headphones Don’t Stick in My Ears
  7. Product Packaging That Packs a Punch

  8. Craigslist Founder Won’t Sell Out
  9. NHL All Star Voting Has a Viral Storm on its Hands
  10. Philips Shave Everywhere Ad is Viral at its Best

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Filed under advertising, Blogging, Branding, Business, Communications, Craigslist, Facebook, innovation, Internet, ipod, marketing, Markus Frind, NHL, Online marketing tactics, Packaging, Plentyoffish.com, Small Business Marketing, Social Media, social network, Starbucks, Technology, Top Ten List, Viral, Web 2.0

Interview with iPod and iPhone Marketing Guru

iPhone

John Fortt at Fortune interviews Apple’s marketing lead for two of its most popular products, the iPhone and iPod, Greg Joswiak. Greg is credited for pushing for the 14-inch iBook despite Steve Job’s misgivings. The product has since turned into one of Apple’s best sellers. I wonder if he had any say in the terrible design of the In-Ear iPod Headphones? Nevertheless, I’m a big fan of Apple products and their marketing.

For a long time you managed Apple’s Mac laptop business, which is also going gangbusters these days, and I know you were really involved in discussions about how those products were designed and positioned in the product family. How was that job different from managing the iPod and iPhone?

First of all I manage product marketing and product management — I don’t actually own the engineering. But we work very closely with them, as you know, on the features we create and what the product’s going to be about. I look in a lot of ways at some of the similarities.

The first similarity you’ve heard me talk about before: Apple is in a pretty unique position because we’re a world-class hardware designer and a world-class software designer. It’s rare enough to be on one of those lists, and we’re the only company I can think of that’s on both of those lists. So whenever we design a product, we try to take advantage of that capability that we have, to engineer the hardware and the software together so we can take full advantage of each.

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Filed under Apple, Branding, Design, iMac, innovation, iPhone, ipod, marketing, Marketing Research

New iMac is Stunning

iMacThe new iMac was launched today. Apple keeps pushing the envelope on design, power and functionality to extraordinary heights. I can’t imagine what Sony, Dell and HP feel like every time Apple launches or re-launches a product. BTW, what gives with Sony? A brand that was synonymous with high quality, innovative technology worthy of bragging rights while I was growing up – Sony Walkman, Sony Television, Sony Camcorder – is now the latest poster boy for getting too fat and full of itself. The iPod and Wii are two tough reminders of everything that is wrong at Sony.

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Filed under Apple, Branding, Business, Dell, Design, Electronics, HP, iMac, innovation, ipod, marketing, Packaging, Sales, Selling, Small Business Marketing, Sony, Technology

Apple Succeeds by Limiting Choice

Apple fanGreat article passed along to me by my colleague Robert about how Apple has been so successful in generating raving fans of its products by limiting product choices and customization. This goes in the face of what many of us believe is bad business. We all assume and are told that customers want complete freedom of choice, and the more options you offer, the better. But what customers value more than freedom of choice, is convenience in buying. I have experienced this many times myself. If anyone has purchased a vehicle, depending on the brand you buy from, some will give you what I feel are too many options with an a la carte menu, while others limit them to usually three clear, distinctive bundled packages (sport, convenience, and luxury). Customers do value the freedom of choice, but value convenience even more… especially when they are inundated with so many competitive products to choose from. Making it easy for them to buy means offering distinctively different versions of a product or service that are central to a customer’s needs. Apple offers three distinct versions of the iPod (Shuffle, Nano and the regular), while Creative and SanDisk offer 10 to 16 different MP3 players. Which has been more successful? You can read the article here.

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Filed under Apple, Branding, Business, ipod, marketing, Packaging, Selling, Small Business Marketing, Technology

Apple: Hello, iPhone

iPhoneJobs unveils device that plays iTunes, searches Web and makes calls; company also announces video download player, will offer Paramount films on iTunes.

By Owen Thomas, Business 2.0 writer, January 9 2007: 5:36 PM EST

SAN FRANCISCO (CNNMoney.com) — Consumers will finally get the chance to own an iPhone, a mobile phone that plays iTunes and surfs the Web, electronics maker Apple said Tuesday. The device will retail for between $499 and $599. Company chairman Steve Jobs, speaking at the company’s annual Macworld expo, called the iPhone, which will be available in June, a “revolutionary mobile phone” that will feature an iPod, phone and what he called an “Internet communicator.” Jobs also disclosed that Apple’s (up $7.10 to $92.57, Charts) iTunes will sell Paramount films, and that the long-awaited AppleTV device to view downloaded videos will be available beginning in February.

The phone is rectangular, and the entire front surface is a touch screen. All of its functions are activated by touch, but when you bring your iPhone to your face, a proximity sensor will turn off the touchscreen so you don’t accidentally face dial. The phone, which runs the Mac OS X, will be able to download and play both music and movies. It will come in two models — a $499 version with 4 gigabytes of memory and a $599 one with 8 gigabytes. “This is a day I’ve been looking forward to for two-and-a-half years,” Jobs told the crowd at San Francisco’s Moscone Center. Jobs was particularly enthusiastic about the iPhone’s Web-browsing capabilities. “It’s bad out there today,” says Jobs of mobile Web browsers. “It’s a real revolution to bring real Web browsing to a phone.” As an example, Jobs called up The New York Times’ Web site. The full page displayed, rather than the kind of special, oddly formatted, version that most smartphones show. He then called up Google Maps to find a nearby Starbucks (Charts). He actually prank called it and ordered “4,000 lattes to go.” Despite all these bells and whistles, Jobs said the “killer app is making calls.” The iPhone will operate on the GSM protocol, but won’t have third-generation broadband initially. Jobs said that 3G capability is coming. It will also sync with the Mac’s Address Book application.

Cingular, a unit of AT&T (up $0.13 to $33.94, Charts), will be Apple’s sole U.S. partner. It’s an exclusive multiyear agreement, which means no other carrier will be able to sell the iPhone through 2009. In a move that could hurt BlackBerry maker Research in Motion (down $11.16 to $131.00, Charts), Apple will offer free push e-mail from Yahoo (down $0.34 to $27.58, Charts) on the phone device. RIM currently charges for its e-mail service. Google (Charts) CEO Eric Schmidt, Yahoo co-founder Jerry Yang and Cingular Wireless CEO Stan Sigman each appeared with Jobs at some point during the keynote. While onstage, Jobs played a voicemail on the phone from former Vice President Al Gore, a member of the company’s board, congratulating the Apple chairman on the new device. It was Gore who led the special committee which recently exonerated Jobs of wrongdoing in the company’s options backdating controversy.

On Tuesday Jobs also unveiled the product formerly known as iTV, which will now be called Apple TV. This device has a wireless connection that will let up to five computers stream or download video content to a television. It can connect to a large-screen high definition television, and with 40 gigabytes of memory can store 50 hours of movies and television shows. Apple TV will ship next month, and will sell for $299. Jobs said the company is accepting orders. Jobs announced that there have been 2 billion iTunes sold for iPods. He said it took 3 years to sell the first billion and ten months to sell the second billion. He added that 1.3 million movies have been sold for video iPods. There was some question as to whether Apple would be able to use the iPhone name for the device. But Cisco Systems (down $0.16 to $28.47, Charts), which owns the rights to the iPhone name, said Tuesday it expects to reach agreement with Apple later Tuesday on using the name for its device. “Given Apple’s numerous requests for permission to use Cisco’s iPhone trademark over the past several years and our extensive discussions with them recently, it is our belief that with their announcement today Apple intends to agree to the final documents and public statement that were distributed to them last night and addressed a few remaining items,” Cisco said in a statement obtained by CNN. “We expect to receive a signed agreement today.” The company also disclosed that it is changing its name to Apple Inc. from Apple Computer Inc. to reflect the changing nature of the company’s product list. Apple shares surged nearly $7, or more than 8 percent, to $92.44 on the announcement.

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Filed under Apple, Communications, Design, ipod, marketing, Technology