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Posts Tagged ‘iPhone OS 4’

Apple’s iPhone Sales Were Weak Because The Chinese And Big Businesses Love It [Huh?]

Eric Lai, Senior Writer | July 25, 2012 in Mobile Data and Messaging,Mobile Industry,Mobility | Comments (0)

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Let’s keep a little perspective. Apple still sold 26 million iPhones in its fiscal Q3, up 28% year-over-year, worth $16.2 billion, up 22% year-over-year. The strongest challenger to the iPhone, Samsung’s Galaxy S III smartphone, has been sold 10 million times two months after launch, but that was after months of pent-up demand and stellar reviews.

The normally overexcitable stock market is certainly keeping its collective head. As of mid-day, Apple’s stock is only down 5% on above-average trading. You’d think after what you read on Techmeme yesterday that AAPL would look like this:

China Syndrome

Some are blaming Europe for iPhone weakness. But if you’re going to point to a region, point to China, where sales fell 28% to $5.7 billion in Q3 from $7.9 billion in Q2.

People forget that Apple hugely ramped up iPhone sales in China at the beginning of the year. It launched the iPhone 4S at Apple Stores in Beijing and Shanghai in January. January/February is when Chinese New Year occurs, when workers get their annual bonus (usually at least several months worth of pay) plus several weeks of vacation. It’s really the closest equivalent to Christmas, with lots of gift giving. And what better gift for a young urbanite than an iPhone?

Also, Apple officially began offering iPhones via a second carrier partner, China Mobile, at the end of Q2. With 129 million subscribers on its CDMA network, China Mobile is like the U.S.’s Verizon. As a result, its iPhone shipments in China in fiscal Q2 were up 5x year-over-year. Yes, 500%. And don’t forget that China is Apple’s second largest market in the world.

The net is that Apple’s iPhone comparables for Q3 vs. Q2 in China were impossible to match. But few analysts seemed to notice the China situation, despite Tim Cook openly talking about it.

Virtually, all of the $2.2 billion sequential revenue decline, was due to iPhone sales in Greater China and about half of that $2.2 billion is attributable to changes in the channel inventory not the underlying sell through of the iPhone.

No, let’s blame the euro crisis or the housing market or Obama/the Fed because that’s trendier.

Enterprise Savvy

For my other argument, I’m going out a little on a limb, using circumstantial evidence, albeit what I consider strong evidence.

There is no doubt that enterprises are buying up iPhones. Not being brought in by BYOD – that’s more of a tablet/iPad phenom – but being bought up by IT and deployed as a standard device, often replacing BlackBerries.

For instance, Good Technology reported today that among users of its MDM software, the iPhone dominated Android, with 62% share vs. Android’s 37% share of smartphones.


Or as Cook said:

We estimate that the number of iPhones in the Fortune 500 has more than doubled in the past year…PepsiCo has deployed thousands of iPhones with an in-house app build specifically for their field merchandisers. This app has eliminated paper reports and provides real-time information to managers, sales teams and delivery drivers.

German insurance provider ERGO has built an in-house app for iPhone that thousands of agents use to process insurance claims, which has significantly reduced paper work and improved processing time and customer satisfaction.

The good thing about enterprise deployments is that they are huge. The bad thing is that CIOs and IT managers are savvier than your average consumer (slap yourself on the back if you’re in IT). You know exactly when smartphones are introduced, and the effect of timing on refresh cycles and Total Cost of Ownership (TCO). And you are plugged into the rumor mill about the iPhone 5, as evidenced by your reading this and other blogs.

It doesn’t take that many Fortune 500 CIOs to wait for the iPhone 5 to cause enterprise iPhone sales to become unfavorably “lumpy” for Apple.  If this is a significant factor, I don’t think Apple would admit to it, as it would show a crack in the façade of broad enterprise embrace of the iPhone.

Any readers working in IT who want to confirm or disconfirm that this entered into your decisionmaking about whether or not to deploy iPhones this quarter?

Still, I think the broad narrative holds true – enterprises are still embracing the iPhone. But as it becomes a significant segment for Apple, expect Apple to experience more seasonality in sales as enterprises try to time their buying and refresh cycles to gain maximum TCO.


Thinking of a Prepaid iPhone? Here’s a Moneysaving Trick For You Enterprise Workers

Eric Lai, Senior Writer | June 15, 2012 in Mobile Data and Messaging,Mobile Industry,Mobility | Comments (0)

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Spending money to save money may sound like a retail gimmick, like BOGO. (more…)

Amazing Stats from Apple Q3 Earnings Prove Again We're In A Post-PC Era

Eric Lai, Senior Writer | April 25, 2012 in Mobile Data and Messaging,Mobile Industry,Mobility | Comments (0)

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Apple’s stock price could bounce around anywhere between $300 and $1,000 over the next several weeks. I really have no idea. What I am certain, though, is that Apple’s Q3 earnings results announced Wednesday show Cupertino again blazing the trail into the mobile era.


Three Ways to Thwart XRY’s 2-Minute iPhone Passcode Hack

Eric Lai, Senior Writer | April 1, 2012 in Mobile Data and Messaging,Mobile Industry,Mobility,security | Comments (0)

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Smartphones are vaunted for their ease of use. But that’s precisely why they can be so vulnerable to hacking software, as Micro Systemation’s XRY showed last us last Wednesday.


Cutest, Weirdest iPad & iPhone Accessories at Macworld iWorld [Gallery]

Eric Lai, Senior Writer | January 27, 2012 in Mobile Data and Messaging,Mobile Industry,Mobility | Comments (0)

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Reason no. 647 why we are already in the Post-PC Age: the organizers of Macworld, famously abandoned by Apple 3 years ago, seem to have successfully retooled the conference by adding the appellation “iWorld” to the name, and attracting a crowd of iPad and iPhone exhibitors in the process. (more…)

Updated: Why this Well-Known Biotech Firm Deploys 17,000 iPads and iPhones

Eric Lai, Senior Writer | January 13, 2012 in Mobile Data and Messaging,Mobile Industry,Mobility | Comments (0)

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(Updated and corrected Jan 18, 2012) There were some impressive enterprise deployments discussed at the AppNation conference in San Francisco on Thursday.


Worst Mobile Predictions for 2011

Eric Lai, Senior Writer | December 29, 2011 in Mobile Industry,Mobility,Sybase News | Comments (0)

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Compared to, say, a journalist in a war zone, tech writers have it pretty good. The worst injury we can suffer is a stiff back from an especially long product keynote. The biggest job hazard is having our bad predictions thrown back at us, either by readers, or, in my case, by myself.


Dialing into Generation M(obile)

Eric Lai, Senior Writer | October 12, 2011 in Mobile Data and Messaging,Mobile Industry,Mobility,Sybase News | Comments (0)

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For Kenny Jahng, an online media consultant in Livingston, New Jersey, there has been no shortage of ‘aha’ moments affirming the educational value of his kids’ iPad 2.


Video Killed the Radio Star, But Smartphones Did NOT Kill the Flip Cam

Eric Lai, Senior Writer | April 14, 2011 in Mobile Data and Messaging,Mobile Industry,Mobility | Comments (0)

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I already had a Sony Handycam, purchased when my first son was born 7 years ago, as well as a video-enabled Canon Elph digital camera (which I’ve subsequently upgraded several times, they’re that good).


How General Mills Deploys SAP On iPad (Webinar, Summarized)

Eric Lai, Senior Writer | March 8, 2011 in Mobile Data and Messaging,Mobile Industry,Mobility,Sybase News | Comments (0)

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(Updated March 23 with details about Sybase Professional Services) For the second installment of UTalkTooMuch, I’ll give the February 27th webinar by The Principal Consulting and Sybase the 500-words-or-less treatment. The two firms collaborated, along with SAP, to deploy a CRM application onto the iPad for General Mills, the huge maker of breakfast cereals (Lucky Charms, anyone?) and other packaged foodstuffs from my hometown of Minneapolis.


iPad 2 Will Continue Enterprise Invasion Despite Delivering Zilch For Them

Eric Lai, Senior Writer | March 3, 2011 in Mobile Data and Messaging,Mobile Industry,Mobility | Comments (0)

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Faster CPU. Videoconferencing. An HDMI video out for corporate presentations. These represented the grand total of what could charitably be labeled as new enterprise features in the iPad 2. Though that requires you to stretch the definition of enterprise as much as a pair of bicycle tights on a sumo wrestler.


Cartoon Critters Explain Why Tablets Are Better Than PCs (YouTube, Xtranormal)

Eric Lai, Senior Writer | February 10, 2011 in Mobile Data and Messaging,Mobile Industry,Mobility | Comments (0)

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Do you still prefer an immovable putty-colored box (read: desktop PC) to a sleek, powerful mobile device? Let me try to convince you otherwise, with the aid of some furry woodland creatures.


Five Reasons Why Tablets Like the iPad Are PCs

Eric Lai, Senior Writer | January 26, 2011 in Mobile Data and Messaging,Mobile Industry,Mobility | Comments (1)

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Market research firm Canalys made a gutsy move today: it became the first major market tracker to start lumping consumer tablets like the iPad and Samsung Galaxy Tab together with other PCs.

Five Good Things About the Verizon iPhone for Enterprises

Eric Lai, Senior Writer | January 11, 2011 in Mobile Data and Messaging,Mobile Industry,Mobility | Comments (0)

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Gartner’s Hype Cycle seems so quaint these days. Seemingly within minutes of Verizon’s iPhone 4 launch on Tuesday morning, BNET’s Damon Brown had a post up arguing that the Verizon iPhone is “not for serious business professionals.”


Realistically, How Much Oomph Will Dual-Core Deliver to Mobile Devices?

Eric Lai, Senior Writer | January 6, 2011 in Mobile Data and Messaging,Mobile Finance and Banking,Mobility | Comments (0)

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Dual-core devices are generating the most excitement at CES this year. The LG Optimus 2X, aka the second stab at the SuperPhone. Motorola’s matching Atrix smartphone and its Xoom tablet. The lurking BlackBerry PlayBook. Even the so-far-absent but much-rumored iPad 2.


CES: The Six Features That Will Define The SuperPhone of 2011

Eric Lai, Senior Writer | January 5, 2011 in Mobile Data and Messaging,Mobile Industry,Mobility | Comments (0)

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Silicon Valley marketers pump out tech jargon like a teenage girl changes her clothes (sorry Katy Perry).

Think Your Enterprise Was ‘Born Ready’ for Mobile? Think Again.

Eric Lai, Senior Writer | December 2, 2010 in Mobile Data and Messaging,Mobile Industry,Mobility,security | Comments (0)

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“You ready?” “I was BORN ready.” There’s a reason this line is a cliche of cheesy action movies, and the comedies that make fun of them (video): it’s utter nonsense, and likely to cause Big Trouble in your Little Enterprise.


The Biggest Enterprise Deployments of Apple’s iPad Tablet (List!)

Eric Lai, Senior Writer | September 7, 2010 in Mobile Data and Messaging,Mobile Finance and Banking,Mobile Industry,Mobility,Sybase News | Comments (0)

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Just because no one else will. I’ve created a database of businesses and organizations rolling out the iPad on a large or trial basis.

This will help temper my otherwise wild speculations, such as the one I made last week that SAP’s rollout of 1,000 – now 1,500 – iPads had to be the “single largest in the world,” even larger than Apple’s internal usage.

You can view and download the list, maintained via Google Docs, here:

I’ll try my best to keep this list up-to-date for as long as it seems useful. But I’ll need your help. So if you know about or read about a large deployment of iPads, please e-mail me at or send me a msg via Twitter @ ericylai along with the relevant web link. I’ll start a list of Android deployments as soon as those hit the market in earnest. Thanks!

SAP To Deploy Up To 17,000 iPads In 12 Months

Eric Lai, Senior Writer | in Mobile Data and Messaging,Mobile Industry,Mobility,Sybase News | Comments (0)

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The news that SAP AG has already deployed iPads to 1,000 lucky-duck employees, made a big splash over the American Labor Day weekend (see Twitter).


Apple/AT&T may not be preventing iOS 4 jailbreaks, but your enterprise could soon be

Eric Lai, Senior Writer | June 24, 2010 in Mobile Industry,Mobility | Comments (1)

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Several days after the release of iOS 4, and, ho hum, some hacker has already jailbroken it. But wait! The new twist is that there are reports, based on an anonymous-but-detailed-tip from an alleged Apple employee, that Apple and AT&T plan to send mandatory over-the-air updates every 1-2 weeks that will disable iPhones running jailbroken copies of iOS 4.