Just another iLaunch, or a new line in the sand?

Apple has fulfilled many promises, but will this translate to tangible gains?

Tags: Apple IncorporatedUSAWearable device
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Just another iLaunch, or a new line in the sand? Stephen McBride, Editor, ITP.net.
By  Stephen McBride Published  September 10, 2014

"There were few surprises in the two new iPhones," says Ezra Gottheil, principal analyst, Computing Practice, Technology Business Research (TBR). "Most of the new features and capabilities had been rumoured or disclosed at Apple's Worldwide Developer Conference in June 2014, and most of the improvements were incremental. Nevertheless, the enhancements taken together are a better phone and, TBR believes, a leader in premium smartphones. For Apple, the introduction of a larger 5.5-inch model, the iPhone 6 Plus, removes a major handicap - the lack of a large-screen model - something many users prefer."

"Larger screen iPhones remove a key differentiator that has insulated Samsung, Sony, HTC and LG's large screen flagship smartphones from iPhone competition," says Ian Fogg, senior director, IHS. "Shrewdly, Apple has prepared the ground to make sure its app ecosystem will be available quickly on the new iPhones by providing developers with the tools to easily support different screen sizes in iOS8, which was unveiled to developers three months ago at WWDC."

Wearables are a relatively new category and worldwide take-up has been lax so far. Some analysts believe that Apple may not only be the player to accelerate adoption rates, but that iPhone sales may actually benefit from the introduction of an attractive device that needs an iPhone to operate.

"Apple will drive this market," predicts Martin Scott, head of Consumer Services research at Analysys Mason. "Other manufacturers will benefit from a ‘halo' of increased interest and awareness in smartwatches as a credible device type, but we do not anticipate any vendor matching Apple in the short or medium term. The restriction of the Apple Watch to iPhone customers, and future cross-working with HomeKit and HealthKit strongly reinforce Apple's device and lifestyle ecosystem."

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