“To say that Apple’s iPhone 6S has failed to live up to expectations is an understatement,” David Goldman reports for CNN.
“The iPhone 6S has the dubious distinction of being the first iPhone ever to sell fewer models than its predecessor,” Goldman reports. “And it’s not underperforming the iPhone 6 by a little bit — Apple sold 51.2 million iPhones last quarter, 10 million fewer than it sold during the first three months of 2015.”
“The iPhone 6S’ poor performance dragged down Apple’s overall sales last quarter, causing Apple’s revenue to fall for the first time in 13 years,” Goldman reports. “The iPhone 6S had a set of relatively unappealing upgrades compared to the iPhone 6. 3D Touch was its most innovative feature, but it’s utility is still rather limited. It also has a better camera than the iPhone 6. Those features haven’t provided a compelling case for customers to put down $650.”
Read more in the full article here.
MacDailyNews Take: Comparing to the iPhone 6 is unfair.
That said, it didn’t have to be this way. We’ve been advocating “death to the ‘S'” for years and as recently as last Tuesday:
Apple should strive to execute annual iPhone updates, in three display sizes if the SE is successful (which we think it will be), and drop the off-year “S” model concept. Apple is certainly big enough and rich enough to do a new iPhone family each and every year. Apple should have killed the tock year “S” model idea years ago.
What’s happened with iPhone is painfully obvious: Apple was at least a year (more likely two years) late with properly-sized iPhones. When iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus finally, blessedly materialized, buyers quite literally stampeded to get them. Then, when faced with such a “tough compare” this year, Apple was still sticking with their ill-conceived “S” model concept – making the tough compare much, much tougher.
The “iPhone 7” family – three models with the same case design and all with 3D Touch — comprised of the 4-inch iPhone 7 SE, the 4.7-inch iPhone 7, and the 5.5-inch iPhone 7 Plus — should have debuted last September. That would have taken care of the current tough compare with iPhone 6/Plus. Then, this year, the iPhone 8 family, again with a new case design, but now waterproof, with dual cameras, etc. would debut this September. In 2017, perhaps Liquidmetal and AMOLED will be ready go for the iPhone 9. Etcetera. No more “S” years, Apple. Duh.
Had Apple done as we’ve just described, they’d have sold millions more iPhone units this year and millions upon millions more each year going forward.
Apple’s raison d’être is to delight customers. “S” model “tock” year iPhones do not delight customers in the same way as new “tick” year models. Obviously. They’re still the best smartphones on the planet, but they’re just okay. A bit of a meh. We all know that “S” models exist so Apple can wring out nice margins from existing designs and tooling, not expressly to delight customers. When Apple strays from its main goal is when things get wobbly. Just delight customers, Apple, and the world will beat a path to your door.
If we didn’t work for MacDailyNews, we’d have skipped the iPhone 6s Plus and held onto our iPhone 6 Plus units with no qualms – and we’re the most rabid Day One iPhone buyers you’ll ever find.
Why have an annual iPhone upgrade program, if you’re not going to wow us annually with new iPhones?
Analyst: Apple to dump ‘iPhone 7s’ and jump straight to iPhone 8 next year – April 22, 2016
Analyst cuts Apple price target, says ‘iPhone 7’ doesn’t look like a must-have upgrade – April 20, 2016
Why the 2017 iPhone will be made of Liquidmetal – April 18, 2016
Ming-Chi Kuo: Apple’s 2017 iPhone to feature new ‘all glass’ enclosure – April 18, 2016
75 percent of teens say their next phone will be an iPhone – April 13, 2016
Mossberg: Apple’s iPhone 7 had better be spectacular – March 23, 2016