Analysts: Apple ‘iPhone’ design and business strategy more ambitious than expected

“Apple’s phone designs are more ambitious than expected. And some say its business strategy may aim just as high,” Scott Moritz reports for The Street.com.

Moritz reports, “Industry observers stalking the development of Apple’s highly anticipated iPhone are abuzz over patent filings showing blueprints for a mobile device that also incorporates a number of functions like a PDA, music player, video player, game player, digital camera and GPS satellite location. The patent filing, which includes two pages of sketches depicting several devices, covers a broad range of shapes and features.”

“‘You can tell the legal team was involved, they covered all the bases,’ says American Technology Research analyst Shaw Wu, referring to the breadth of possibilities presented in the filing. Wu issued a report Friday on Apple’s iPhone plans,” Moritz reports. “The news comes as Wu’s colleague Albert Lin published a report Tuesday announcing that Apple’s iPhone is set for production early next year.”

“The iPhone that Wu and Lin expect to hit retail markets early next year, is likely to be a music phone aimed at Sony’s Walkman phone and LG’s chocolate,” Moritz reports. “Wu and Lin expect the tech maverick to go its own way by offering a wireless service to go along with the iPhone. Ventures like Boost, Amp’d and Virgin Mobile resell other telco’s wireless service under their own brand. This strategy is known as mobile virtual network operator, or MVNO. ‘Apple is a company to watch out for,’ says Wu. ‘This is when they are the most dangerous. They could turn the business model upside down.'”

Full article here.

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38 Comments

  1. Whatever Apple’s model, the American mobile phone industry is woefully behind the times and really needs to be stood on its head. It’s a bad joke that 20 million Mac users are virtually excluded from using their cell phones to connect to the internet. In India, I used my cell phone as a tethered modem without a problem; but in America this is almost impossible. Ridiculous!

  2. >’You can tell the legal team was involved, they covered all the bases,’ says American Technology Research analyst Shaw Wu,>

    Well, what a surprise! A legal team getting involved in purely legal matters.

  3. Just in case all the anals are dead wrong about what The Steve will announce and when, I’m buying AAPL PUTS. It could get uglier than a monkey.

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  4. Anonymous
    Some of us would like a simple was to carry files and contacts without jumping through hoops to link with our Macs. At the same time, using it as a mobile modem for a Macbook and maybe some music files and pictures would be nice. Not having a decent tool for this is what is pathetic.

  5. It’s been my impression that Mr. Wu talks up Apple, and specifically Apple stock before every keynote and other important announcement from Apple, then afterwards, he downplays his earlier reports and reduces his estimate of their stock price target.

    Next week let’s see what he says. Until then I wouldn’t trust him to accurately describe what my dog just left me in the back yard.

  6. Hey, Anonymous:

    “At most the iPhone will be a GSM-based curiosity for the Mac fanbois to overspend on and flash in public, hoping to impress the crowd.”

    Like, doh! You seem to be referring to something called “brand loyalty”.

    You can purchase any old car but you aspire to a Porsche. You can fly any old airline but you aspire to Virgin Atlantic. You can buy any old TV set but you aspire to a Sony Bravia.

    Unless you’ve been in a cave for the last 30 years, you’d recognise that the entire basis of high-value brands is built entirely on fabois.

    Spending more than required actually purchases something which delivers above expectation and gives sufficient remuneration back to the brand to continue innovation.

    Apple – in that sense – is egregious as an American company given the country’s general conservatisim and lack of innovation when compared with Asia Pacific [much better at build-em-cheap] or Europe [design-em-cool].

    I’m proud to be a supporter of Apple and if you call me “fanboi” I’ll just take that as a compliment.

    And yes, it’s all about impressing the crowd, dick.

  7. To: “Don’t Pass Koolaid”

    Microsoft Motto: Selling more shitty releases for previous shitty releases and making the consumers pay for our mistakes over and over. Really brilliant.

    By the way, since at least half of all iPod purcahses are going to Winddows users, does that make them cultists too? Ignorant

    Finally, it isn’t koolaid and it never was. It’s Applejuice. Really ignorant.

  8. The author got only some of the points of what the patent filing signified. Yes, it does look like the lawyers trying to create a patent fence around Apple’s vision of a convergence device and as a defensive move against others who might file to create submarine patents with the sole intent of suing any company which achieves success with a convergence device. I said that in a recent MDN post. BTW, read the extended article on the filing which was included in a link in the original story posted on MDN.

    But this article totally ignores that the Apple filing includes language for combining the key software interfaces, sensors and transducers with wireless connection — Blue Tooth (BT), typically — to some other device. This way, an iPod with a mutable full screen can act as the users interface with other devices — e.g., cell phones, GPS systems.

    So imagine you own a BT capable cell phone and it is in your pocket. It rings, or rather, your BT iPod rings and requests pick-up. You pick up the call with the default behavior for stopping/suspending/or not – your choice based on your preferences set up – whatever you had been doing with the iPod. The front face and interface devices now give full functionality for the particular model of your attached cell phone.

    Note that in this model and for this application, Apple only acts as an interface for the cell phone. This is Apple’s strong suit. They do not need to deal with the telecom regulators – at least not in dealing with the RF issues, other than BT. They do not even need to deal with the carriers or cell phone manufacturers, though they might want to cooperate with them in a win/win business game. Apple has the chance of hijacking the user interface for the bulk of the mobile consumer electronic business, a critical layer that is currently so poorly implemented by the industry. When examined, this hijacking of the user interface and human interaction function by Apple is also likely to be at the core of its home entertainment architecture.
    This is a huge opportunity for Apple. They can win this game, because they add enormous value to a key horizontal layer of the consumer electronics industry which has been and is so ill served.

    Apple is simply going to blow people’s minds with this stuff. They are about to become the common thread for the whole of the consumer electronics industry. And, of course, the Mac and OS X are at the heart of Apple and about to overthrow the current dictator of that market. I am sure glad I bet the farm on AAPL. It’s an order of magnitude higher than what I paid for it and it’s only the beginning. This is fun.

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