The iPhone needs little introduction. You either have one or know someone who does.
For many, you either love it or you don’t. iPhone users typically have no problem buying the next upgrade, even if it’ll cost them thousands out of pocket. In fact, the news media loved to post countless stories about thousands of customers who would wait hours in line just to get their hands on the latest model.
But the iPhone isn’t infallible. It’s a mammoth in the smartphone industry, acting as the main competitor against brands like Google and HTC. But it has its own problems and threats waiting around the corner.
This SWOT Analysis of the iPhone breaks down the best, worst, and questionable aspects of this favored smartphone device.
1. Strengths: The Name You Know And The Features You Love
Apple. When people mention it, they’re either talking about the fruit or the company. Most people assume the company.
As one of the leaders in the computer, tablet, and smartphone industry, their brand recognition and loyalty allows the iPhone to be one of the most well-known and purchased devices in the world. The sleek build and slim design make it recognizable in person, movies, or television shows.
But that’s also because Apple invests heavily into branding and marketing. They initially focused on television commercials, but now they’ve added online ads, videos, and conferences designated to the newest iPhone.
The iPhone has an app for anything. Some of these apps are exclusive to iOS; the operating system only found on Apple-made devices. These apps range from professional to personal, allowing everyone to use their iPhones exactly as they need.
The device is built to multi-task, offering hundreds of gigabytes of data to store photos, videos, music, and projects. It’s a mini-computer you keep in your back pocket. The features upgrade with the unveiling of new models. Many people are thrilled by the HD camera Apple likes to say is a major tool professional photographers use for their photoshoots. In fact, they apparently use the iPhone over expensive alternatives, like Canon or Nikon.
Apple focuses heavily on promoting the iPhone because it is the majority of their sales in America and overseas. It’s even grown in popularity in countries like China. And now they’re expanding more into India.
2. Weaknesses: The Price Isn’t Wallet-Friendly
The price. It’s a major issue for all Apple products, but the iPhone is no exception. The latest model, the iPhone X, retails for as much as $1,149.00 without a contract. It costs nearly as much as a high-performance laptop!
People always hope for an affordable version, but that’s not in the plans. It also goes against their brand. Part of the appeal of an iPhone is how luxurious it feels to open the box and own one for yourself. Lowering the price would rip that image to shreds.
Also, the battery isn’t removable. This means if there’s an issue with the phone, you have to send it back to headquarters for fixing, even if all it needs is a quick battery swap. Although this is becoming common for non-iPhones, users till see it as a massive con.
Additionally, in a “courageous” move (the company’s words), they removed the headphone jack from the iPhone 7 and up. If you want to listen to music, you have to either buy their Air Pods (Bluetooth headset) or a dongle. The dongle is just an additional connector between the iPhone to the headset. This move sent users in a frenzy and definitely with a few changing their mind about getting the iPhone 7 back when it hit the shelves.
3. Opportunities: Branching Into New Markets
The iPhone is a distinguished name in North America, and now it’s becoming common in Asian markets. In countries like Japan and Korea, they’re loyal to the smartphones native their land, such as Samsung. But iPhone sales are rising in these markets, allowing Apple to branch out and take advantage of the growing profits.
The smartphone industry is one built upon innovation. Users want new, better, upgraded features. They’re on the lookout for crystal clear cameras and longer lasting batteries and faster processors. Apple emerged as a massive innovator in their field and they have the manpower and funds to perfect their offerings. For example, they could offer more emphasis on making the phone more user-friendly for older folks.
But, on the other hand, because they’ve carved out such a big piece of the smartphone pie, they don’t necessarily feel the need to think as creatively anymore. They’re “set” so to speak. Other companies can try what Apple isn’t, but they’re easily crushed.
4. Threats: Cheaper And Fancy Alternatives
Despite having the means to crush the competition, that doesn’t mean there isn’t. It’s easy for businesses to come out of the woods because they only have to offer one simple thing: a cheaper smartphone. Everything is just extra (but many consumers would argue it’s necessary).
Other colossal names in this space know this. Consider how often Samsung and HTC offer a cheaper phone with all the bells and features. Large screens, lightning fast processors packed with apps for Android (the operating system for non-iPhones), and a long-lasting battery.
Speaking of Android, that system is the iPhone’s biggest competition. Android can use millions of apps (some exclusive to the operating system) and allows for simple customizable changes to the phone’s appearance (themes). iOS and Android have been warring for decades now and with so many phone brands using Android (as iOS is only on Apple-made devices), it’s no wonder that Android is leading in this market.
While it can’t look like the iPhone, these alternatives have fantastic features and their own set of pros and cons.
Photo by Rheagan Hoback on Unsplash