How Apple’s revolutionary iPhone triumphed in business circles or something

“In recent years, iPhone sales made up 40 per cent of the US smartphone market,” Jonathan Margolis writes for The Financial Times. “Because they work for years and their looks do not age, most of the billion-plus iPhones sold over the past decade are likely to be still in use — one for every seven people on the planet. Not bad.”

Margolis writes, “It is the first case I can recall of a premium-priced, luxury product becoming mass market.”

MacDailyNews Take: iPod. How quickly they forget.

“The iPhone, while remaining expensive, has become the phone to own across class and national boundaries,” Margolis writes. “How has this happened?”

“The reasons why the iPhone triumphed über alles in business is not complicated. Firstly, the Apple ecosystem for music, movies and the rest sucks you in. It works well and changing to Android is a faff. So it is not quite a question of consumers taking delight in their iPhones, but of simplicity,” Margolis writes. “The second element of the device’s appeal is its image. In the workplace, an iPhone is a way of demonstrating your nonconformity.”

MacDailyNews Take: “The iPhone triumphed über alles in business,” but choosing an iPhone demonstrates your noncomformity? Puleeze. Choosing an iPhone demonstrates that you have a brain. And that you value your personal and your company’s privacy and data.

Users delight in their iPhones because of the simplicity. Apple has thought out things to the nth degree, from the customer’s perspective (thanks, Steve!). The only thing Android has thought out is how to copy the iPhone closely enough to not get sued too badly and how to spread itself like a plague in order to keep Google in control of as much online advertising as they can manage not to lose to Faceplant. Unfortunately for Google, iPhone has nearly all of the desirable consumers – those with disposable income and the will to spend it – so, in their haste to build unit share with endless BOGOF promotions and cheap-shit feature phones, they’ve cornered the market in the type of user about which good advertisers don’t give even one cheek of a rat’s ass.

Yup, Google built a platform that depends heavily on advertising support, but sold it to the very type of customer who’s the least likely to patronize adsprecisely as we explained so presciently nearly half a decade ago.

Margolis continues, “The iPhone 8 is expected in the autumn and it is difficult to imagine how the new model will maintain momentum.”

MacDailyNews Take: What’s really difficult to imagine is how anyone could have such a paltry imagination.

“The Galaxy S8, regarded by many as the best phone ever, makes the iPhones look rather conservative. But the last thing Apple would want is for its 8 to resemble a me-too Samsung,” Margolis scribbles. “Whether Apple will be brave — or foolish — enough, to start over on the iPhone’s 10th anniversary with something as radical as the original is anyone’s bet.”

MacDailyNews Take: A smartphone is only as good as its ecosystem and Samsung’s “ecosystem” is an unfunny joke. Samsung’s phones, when they don’t explode like their washing machines, are, at best, a collection of off-the-shelf parts, inferior mobile processors, and an off-the-rack operating system best known for fragmentation, insecurity, and privacy-trampling user tracking/data vacuuming from an online banner ad company masquerading as a search engine. Anyone who regards a South Korean dishwasher maker’s latest iPhone wannabe as “the best phone ever” is a painfully myopic moron.

“My guess is that they will stay safe and the iPhone 8 will still be recognisably an iPhone. As the iPhone 18 may be in another 10 years,” Margolis guesses. “But for it to still be the market leader then would be something truly remarkable.”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: You know what would be truly remarkable? If Margolis still has a job trying to write about technology in ten years when we call him on this very article, which, as longtime readers know, we most certainly will. Our iCal never forgets. We’ll revisit this bright and early on Monday, May 17, 2027, Jonathan. On that you can bet.



  1. How much can Apple change the iPhone, looking down the road the next few years? I’m sure it will remain the same rectangular slab it’s been for years. I see nothing wrong with that form factor but apparently, a lot of people don’t quite like it.

  2. The iPod wasn’t a luxury grade player. When it first came out, it cost $399, which seems high today, but for HDD players, for the time, wasn’t. The highest priced player back then was the Creative $600 model, the name of which I forget. It was a round device.

    iPods came down in price over time to $49. It was all very democratic in nature, and not higher priced than anything else.

    1. Oh, it was most definitely high-priced. When iPod came out, there may have only been one other device (as you mention, Creative) that competed in price. All other MP3 players of the time were well below $200 (and there were plenty to choose from).

      You could by at least two of almost any competitor’s devices for the price of the cheapest iPod.

      1. And even when it came down to $50, that was for the ‘Shuffle’, which was still at least twice as expensive as any competing flash-based small MP3 player (some of which could be had for $15, with same storage capacity).

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