It’s hard to believe how fast the markets change. When Apple introduced the iPad less than 3 years ago the entire tech world’s jaws dropped on the floor when Steve Jobs announced a price point that was close to 50% cheaper of what people had expected. It was stunning and in not small part the reason that allowed for the explosive growth and dominant position of the product on the market place. Of course, it wasn’t just the price point that helped Apple redefine the market and create a lead that took over 2 years for anyone to even come close to be considered competition. Computer makers tried for years and several iterations of their quick-thrown-together copycats to reach the same price points and failed.
Until Amazon released the Kindle Fire.
The only company that understood the ecosystem environment that is crucial to make, not just a tablet but increasingly any computer work. Amazon admitted to be selling the Kindles at a near loss and banking for future revenues from media purchases that look the consumer into the Amazon platform.
Could Apple make that switch? And perhaps still drive a hefty profit?
What if Apple announces tomorrow not just a new iPhone but one with it a radical new pricing structure? What if iTunes receives a much needed update and with it the entire iPod line. And to top it all off, what if Apple with the apparent release of the iPad mini later next month completely destroys the competition by setting the price point not just marginally higher than the competition because the product is marginally better, but actually on par or even less than the competition to kill off every possible threat.
Remember those netbooks? Yeah, me neither.