Apple Watch: Has Apple Lost Its Stride?

By: Kedar Gandbhir

Apple has operated its marketing strategy through enhanced product development, oftentimes exceeding consumer expectations. This endless innovative strategy that Apple seems to have is symbolized by the bitten apple on any Macintosh product. Apple has changed the lives of many individuals and is in the homes of many families. This can be attributed to its success in finding new innovative products. From the desktop computer to the iPhone 6, Apple has constantly been a pioneer for innovation. This past April Apple came out with a new product: the Apple Watch. The new smartwatch has been marketed heavily by many and was intended to be a very revolutionary defining product. Many claimed how it would the productable to track many health related measurements. The product seemed very innovative during the beginning of its development process, but as testing began Apple quickly ran into many flaws.

The product development consists of three stages: (1) identify product opportunities – many ideas are created in this phase, but very few make it to production; (2) define the product opportunity – (A) define and test the product idea, (B) create a marketing strategy for the product, and (C) analyze the product’s business case; (3) develop the product opportunity – Finally design and develop product consumer wants and what marketing strategy suggested. Apple was successful in completing the first two stages, but struggled during the development of the product opportunity. This can be attributed mostly to technological limitations.

Part of Apple’s issue is that it consistently tries to live up to its own high expectations. When it comes to the three stages of defining a product. Apple often leads its customers to believe that it will constantly be at an Enhanced product level, which is essentially to operate ahead of everyone else by creating revolutionary products. Many of the issues surrounding Apple are highlighted in an article written by Daisuke Wakabayashi, found in the Wall Street Journal. He highlights how Apple’s original idea of the smartwatch was very different than its outcome. The watch was not able live up to the standards set by Apple and many of the new features it was originally intended to contain simply do not work. The watch’s reliability is impacted by how hairy an individual’s arms were and how tight it is worn.

Lately, Apple has been able to have steady profits, based on its history alone and its very loyal customers. Its products have not been particularly impressive lately. What is the true difference between an iPhone 6 and iPhone 6s? One is bigger and slightly faster. I don’t really see any distinct difference in performance between the two. This may be a shift in Apple’s business model, suggesting that individuals get new phones every year. They can simply be seen as additions to older products. But perhaps this all Apple needs in order to keep customers loyal.



14 thoughts on “Apple Watch: Has Apple Lost Its Stride?

  1. Taylor Mason October 19, 2015 / 10:19 pm

    I found this article to be very relevant due to the fact that nowadays most people, especially college students own some sort of Apple product. I definitely agree with Kedar when he states that Apple products have not been particularly impressive lately. They attempt to be as innovative as possible however their new products seem very similar to the last. For instance, recently the iPhone 6s was introduced to the market. Although it may have some new features it does not seem to have many differentiating factors distinguishing it from the iPhone 6. In my opinion, the new Apple watch may be harder to sell within the market. This is primarily due to the fact that competition already exists. Samsung already has a similar device in the market, and there are similar devices such as the Fitbit or the go pro that perform some of the functions that this watch supposedly contains. I believe that it would be beneficial for Apple to more fully develop their products before introducing them to the market. Why waste money on a brand new phone every year when it basically performs all of the same functions? Overall I think that Apple is an extremely successful company however it would definitely be advantageous to take a closer look at their product development processes.


  2. Teresa Polli October 20, 2015 / 6:39 pm

    I found this article very interesting. This is so because I did not know that their was so much criticism regarding the new Apple Product, which is the Apple Watch. My opinion on Apple is that they are extremely innovative and it seems like every time Apple comes out with a new product, their competitors immediately come out with something just like it. Apple is definitely the leader in their market and they have a huge customer base. Especially around campus, I constantly see Apple products such as iPhones, Macs, iPads, etc. Even though they may have hit a miss with this Apple Watch I don’t think that their loyal customers are going anywhere. Maybe in the future they will come out with a new watch that will fix all the problems they found with the product out now. The best thing about Apple is that they take their customers criticisms and use them to improve the product. I believe that Apple is on top and is not going anywhere!


  3. sarajanecox October 21, 2015 / 3:27 am

    This article is very relevant to today’s society because people are always in search of the newest products on the market. Apple is known for their product development that exceeds customer expectations. They do so well in the marketplace because of the constant innovation of products within their reputable brand. Apple products have been adopted homes all over the world. Having so many brand loyal customers creates a major challenge for Apple. Along with giving customer what they want, they also need to continue to remain innovative, giving the customers the next big products. Apple is known to be a “pioneer of innovation.” Apple customers are always waiting for Apple to announce the launch of the newest product. One of the newest products is the Apple watch. This product was supposed to be revolutionary, however, there has been major negative feedback regarding the watch. I agree with the statement in the article, “Apples issue is they are constantly trying to live up to their own high expectations.” They are able to market their product heavily and consumers will want to the product. This is where Apple needs to live up to their high expectations. The product is marketed, however, the product needs to be reliable for customers to want to make the purchase. Word of mouth marketing is vital for companies in today’s societies. With so many outlets of social media, people will talk about your product and others will listen. If your product is not reliable customers who purchased the product will be talking about it. After simply googling the Apple Watch I came across many negative reviews regarding the product. In the future Apple should be sure their product is going to be reliable so it lives up to customers overall expectations. I agree with the article, Apple has a loyal customer base. Yet to remain cutting edge they need to continue to appeal to new audiences so they can broaden their target audience further.


  4. Melissa Santos October 23, 2015 / 8:59 pm

    I like the stance that the author has in terms of his gripes with Apple and how they may be losing there cutting edge appeal. I personally found the Apple watch to be a “smart” Fitbit in terms of functionality. It can clearly do way more than a Fitbit can in terms of messaging and apps. Apple positioned this product to align and compare itself to other, various health tracking devices on the market. What Apple seemed to do here was just throw in their own personal touch to an already existent product, however, I disagree, I feel as though to some extent they fulfilled their consumers desires (in terms of wants and needs) of social connectivity. When people are going for a run, or doing strenuous, psychical activities, the less bulky the device, the better for that matter. While many individuals are picking up on the new, upcoming health trends, I feel as though Apple picked up on this trend, and further accommodated their consumers by adding the option of sending a quick text message or making a quick phone call all while going for a run. At surface value, it seems like this watch just projects over and over, yet again, what Apple has already done, which to some extent it has. But I really think Apple linked social connectivity in terms of convenience. People want a device that doesn’t take up a lot of room when they’re working out, but there is also a need to “stay in touch”. The Apple watch has combined consumers wants/needs of simplicity, convenience and connectivity while working out, all in one device.


  5. Kristen Elizabeth (@baniak_kristen) October 27, 2015 / 6:30 pm

    I really enjoyed this article because I do agree that Apple is declining in their products. I feel like they really wanted the watch to be something special for Apple but in reality it was not a great new innovation for their company. There were many complaints and people were disappointed with the watches and I did not really think it was too clever either. As much as Apple has excellent products, their watch had many complaints and problems for the consumers. I still feel that the IPhones and computers are there best products and if they go off these products they have some problems. Overall I love Apple products, I have had almost all the different phones and one computer and have had no problems. But I really thought this article was interesting because you never hear too many complaints on Apple in general.


  6. Christina Sagarino October 27, 2015 / 6:34 pm

    I believe that this article is very relevant to our society today because as Apple users we are always looking to see what the next amazing product to come out by Apple is. I agree with the article because I feel as though even though Apple says that they are coming out with these products and they are “bigger and better/faster” I cannot always tell the difference because it to me is always such a slight difference. I feel as though Apple would be better off making a new product every two years rather than one year and making sure that this product is made to the best of its ability. I feel as though they release products just to stay up to date with the times but if they waited every two years people would definitely be ready for a new product and wouldn’t just be buying them because they feel obligated and pressured to do so. I feel as though the Apple watch was just a novelty they came up with because they couldn’t think of anything else. It seems unrealistic, the screen is super small and hard to read and it just isn’t practical or convenient. We have phones, we do not need to be replying to texts from our watches, if anything it is distracting and a waste of money.


  7. Tara Stuhr October 29, 2015 / 2:45 am

    Anyone who hasn’t lived under a rock in the last decade knows that Apple leads multiple segments of the technology industry. However, Apple lost its key contributor which, in my opinion, is why they’re slowly on the downward trend, like stated in this article. I believe that Samsung will take over the marketplace seeing that they have already done so in many different regional areas besides the United States. Rumor has it that Samsung is around two to three projects out for innovating their new phones and tablet technologies. Apple is going to slowly lose its interest; however, Samsung just has to come out with the break out product. I’m excited to see what the future holds for the battle between these two companies. Or, who knows, a new company might enter the market and blow both companies out of the water?


  8. veloniss November 12, 2015 / 5:31 pm

    This is an interesting read because you rarely hear about issues regarding Apple products. It is difficult to ALWAYS be the innovator in any industry and I think that this is the issue that Apple is starting to run in to.

    I also agree with you, Kedar, in that the releasing of new products every few months or so, such as the new iPhone 6s is starting to get ridiculous. I am not particularly tech-savvy but when a new product comes out so frequently it makes me want to buy it even less, knowing that it will only have that “cool” factor for a very short period of time.


  9. Emily Koba November 17, 2015 / 8:26 pm

    I completely agree that Apple has an issue with trying to live up to its own expectations. In the case of the Apple Watch, the product opportunity seemed to be overestimated by Apple. The hope for this to become a revolutionary product proved to be unrealistic. People were not willing to pay a high price for a watch that essentially had the same capabilities as their phones. Why would you need 2 devices that do essentially the same things on you at all times? However, the flaws of this product surely will not negatively affect the anticipation for future Apple products. Consumers will always be waiting for the next Apple product announcement, regardless of the popularity of the products announced.


  10. Adam Chadbourne November 28, 2015 / 9:18 pm

    This article does seem to describe some of the issues that Apple has when they introduce a new product. Apple always seems to have some kind of flaw when they first introduce a product or when they create the first version of one of their new operating systems. The bugs always seem to be fixed with the next installment but it seems as if Apple is actually using the first line of product as a beta test and the next generation of the product is what it should have been originally. For example, when Apple released the iPhone 6+, they learned within a few weeks that they were not structurally stable and would bend in people’s pockets, which has been fixed in the recently released iPhone 6S+.

    I also agree with Kedar, with Apple creating new products that always seem to just be the prior product with a couple of upgrades. For example, the iPad Mini 3 was criticized due to it having the exact same speed and specs as the iPad Mini 2, except it had a touch ID. With people gaining these opinions, they may buy Apple products less often if they feel that within a year, a new product that is just slightly better than what’s available will be released.


  11. Matthew E. Dulac December 4, 2015 / 7:10 pm

    I find this article and Apple as a company to be very interesting. When Apple comes out with a new product, everyone pays attention and people flock to the stores in order to be the first to own and use it. The Apple Watch is no different and it is a new innovation that Apple has created but it has already received criticism. When a product is newly launched, there are obviously bugs and this is something that the watch has presently experienced. Apple is the leader in their industry and this can be seen to a large degree. Due to the popularity of Apple, especially in those who are thirty years old and younger, their customer base is increasing and their customers are becoming more and more loyal. Even though the watch does not have all of the features that they had originally intended, it is only the first model and there is obviously room to grow. This is nothing but a baseline and this can be seen with all Apple products. Over time with technological increases, the Watch will grow in popularity and more people will purchase it and utilize its benefits.


  12. Melissa Miller December 7, 2015 / 3:04 pm

    I was a little surprised after reading this article. I did not know that Apple has recieved that much criticism on their Apple Watch product. Apple has known been for their new and innovative products that fly right out of the store doors once they are released. However, Apple has struggled in the past with technical problems with their products, which is no surprising that the Apple Watch had some technical issues. Apples is always trying to have the competitive edge of being the first to market with their products. However, I have seen the Apple Watch and similar products that other companies have come out with. It seems that some of the other products have better and cooler features. So it’s interesting to think about whether Apple’s strategy about being first to market is the best strategy in terms of profit and success.


  13. Michelle McNall December 7, 2015 / 3:19 pm

    Likewise, I was shocked to hear of the criticism around the Apple watch especially since it is so popular. As an attempt to be objective, I guess I can see why people would be displeased if the anatomy readings from the watch could be inaccurate depending on certain variables (ex. heart rate etc.) if Apple is claiming for this product to be 100% accurate but I think it is important to remember that, at the end of the day, this is just technology. Can we expect consumer technology to be 100% accurate? In my opinion, I don’t feel this is practical. The only way to receive such accuracy is to invest a significant amount of money into the technology so that, in a sense, you are using almost the same kind of technology that hospitals and health facilities use when taking vitals etc. The contradictory side of this whole thing is that people complian about the high prices of Apple products. If it is that important to people that they get the absolute accurate heart rate etc., they should research to see if there is something else on the market that does this and is used by health professionals for that purpose.

    However, I think that Apple does have a duty to their customers to not over-promise and under-deliver. They must avoid false advertising (not that they have done so here but just saying that they should keep this in mind as they strive to become more innovative in the future) and while it is respectable to “raise the bar high.” they shouldn’t set expectations too high as it winds up hurting the company’s reputation if they can’t deliver the innovative product they’ve promised to with the quality that consumers have come to expect.

    Cool article, Kedar!


  14. Bharat Mahajan December 7, 2015 / 10:35 pm

    Apple was a brand for Tech revolutionary and to keep up with core consumer’s expectations it was constantly working on innovative ideas and to stay pioneer in the technological world. However, after the success of IPod and IPhone, Apple has become a common house hold name and the consumers were no longer the elite tech geniuses who require high technical specifications. I think this change is a big factor for apple to change it’s business and marketing model.


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