2015-06-08

The Problem With Apple $AAPL


June 22 -- Bloomberg Businessweek's Paul Barrett reports on how Taylor Swift forced Apple to back away from an earlier decision not to pay royalties for songs played on its new streaming-music service during a three-month free trial. He speaks on “Bloomberg Markets.”

5th UPDATE: July 1 Apple Music - Lefsetz Letter: "If you don’t think Apple Music looks just like Beats Music, you never used Beats Music. Except there’s more clutter and it’s less intuitive."

4th UPDATE: June 22: Taylor Swift shames Apple Music into changing its policy: Why Apple needs her more than Spotify - The Washington Post

3rd UPDATE: Apple iPhone sales and revenue significantly declined in the quarter ending in March, 2015, as compared to the previous quarter--statistic source further below at iPhone UPDATE.

2nd UPDATE: June 16, 2015, see: Record labels attack Apple deals that would leave them 'completely screwed' - Telegraph

UPDATE June 10, 2015: Apple Music, a new music streaming service discussed further below, is now the subject of antitrust investigations--It was reported this morning in the Wall Street Journal and Seeking Alpha that both the Attorney General (AG) of New York and of Connecticut are now investigating whether deals made by Apple for its new music service violated Antitrust laws. Apparently this joint investigation is probing whether Apple pressured music labels or whether the labels conspired with Apple and one another against popular freemium services such as Spotify in order to favor Apple Music. New York AG Eric Schneiderman and Connecticut AG George Jepsen were among a group of attorneys generals who in 2013 sued Apple for "conspiring to raise the prices of e-books" for which Apple agreed to pay a $450 million settlement.

UPDATE June 9, 2015, 1PM EDT (US): Can Apple Music Lure Customers Away From Spotify?Technalysis Research President Bob O'Donnell discusses Apple's Worldwide Developers Conference with Bloomberg's Angie Lau on Bloomberg Asia's "First Up" in the video above.

Apple WWDC15 message  at apple.com
Apple WWDC15 message - source: apple.com
Apple: "Live stream of Apple's WWDC 2015 keynote address, viewable in Safari and on Apple TV  —  Our live broadcast begins at 10 a.m. PDT.  Follow along and share your favorite moments from today's #AppleLive event.  Live streaming video requires Safari 6.0.5 or later on OS X v10.8.5 or later; Safari on iOS 6.0 or later." (emphasis added) source: http://www.apple.com/live/2015-june-event/
Of course, one can just do what Domain Mondo did--watch the whole thing (Apple WWDC15 Keynote) LIVE at twit.tv, via a Chrome browser running on a Win7 laptop.

Screenshot of Apple stock 30 minutes into Apple WWDC 2015 Keynote
Screenshot of Apple stock 30 minutes into Apple WWDC 2015 Keynote (source: google.com)
check current price here
The problem with Apple? It's falling behind. Things may "look" good today, but underneath, the "rot" has begun--for background reference read The Innovator's Dilemma--

Apple Watch?  IT’S A LOUSY WATCH: "I’m completely flummoxed how Apple screwed up so bad. Really makes me believe the company is doomed. Because there’s no Steve Jobs, there’s no VISIONARY, no one to say what’s right or wrong, when to go or stop."--Bob Lefsetz

Apple Music? Apple is "strong-arming" (quote from Leo Laporte) its Beats music streaming onto iPhone and iPad users--will strong-arming succeed?--Apple Streaming - Lefsetz:"If Apple were all-powerful, iTunes Radio would have killed Pandora ... the public has no loyalty. It abandoned MySpace for Facebook… advertising and promotion don’t win online, it’s all word of mouth for excellent products. Instagram and Snapchat were not sold by hype. Why does everybody believe that a big press story will put Apple streaming over the top?"--In other words, music today is all about YouTube, Spotify, free or freemium online and paid LIVE.

Apple Photos?--don't waste your time--just get Google Photos. UPDATEGoogle Photos is the best way to store photos - Business Insider, July 7, 2015"Apple's photo management is a mess"-- "I wanted to use iCloud and Apple's Photos app, but I got sick of not knowing why certain photos didn't sync or why my camera roll wouldn't back up for over a month."

Apple Cloud?--far behind Amazon, Google, Facebook, and Microsoft.

Apple iPad?--no growth there.

Other Apple Services? You can get free or cheaper, and usually superior, services from Google, Facebook, Amazon, et al, or pay a premium for the Apple brand and its often inferior services--e.g., Apple maps.

Apple App Store?--very profitable today but native apps are so yesterday--that is why Apple is abandoning its iTunes music store for its streaming service (see Apple Music above).

iPhone? Apple's Crown Jewel today but for how much longer? Voice service is in the process of moving to 4G LTE (VoLTE)--soon all phones will work anywhere with any carrier with just one chip for everything--voice and data. Expect Amazon to give away free phones to its Prime Customers. Google is not far behind.

UPDATE: Statistic: Apple's iPhone sales declined by over 10 million units, and its iPhone revenue declined by over 10 billion dollars, in its most recently reported quarter (ending in March, 2015), as compared to the previous quarter.

Steve Jobs must be rolling over in his grave.

See also: Domain Mondo: Apple Watch, Apple Music, Apple #FAILS? $AAPL, Google Search Trends


edit: 04072015

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