Apple Inc. is an international technology company that deals with electronic and software marketing, manufacturing and designing. Apple Inc. was established in 1976 by Ronald Gerald Wayne, Steve Wozniak and Steven Paul Jobs where its headquarters were placed in Cupertino, CA. The company was initially developed as a computer company focusing on Mac computers and OS X operating system. However, the company advanced its operations to include media devices, media communication devices, and portable digital music prayers. It also deals with a number of related software, network solutions, peripherals, and third party applications and content. The company has a wide range for products. However in this case, the paper will only focus on evaluating its iPhone product.
iPhone is one of the Apple Inc. products that integrate an international communication, iPod and mobile phone device in a single handheld product. Founded on the firm’s multi-touch user interface, this product features web browsing, desk-top email, maps, searching and it is compatible with Windows and Mac-based computers. It automatically synchronizes with users’ content from iTunes libraries, email account and bookmarks. It permits customers to iTunes stores for downloads. The company owns accessories of iPhone, compatible accessories of third-party iPhone are available via the company’s retail and online store and from third parties.
Numerical Market Segmentation
Apple Inc. is employing different techniques to segment its market. Some of these strategies include demographic segmentation, user-related segmentation, Psychographic segmentation, primary target market, three groups of targeted consumers and benefit segmentation (Dib & Siskin, 1996). In the demographic segment, the company considers demographic features that include gender, age, income, occupation and education. The company has been releasing different series of iPhone from iPhone 1st generation, iPhone 3G, 3GS, 4, 4S, 5, 5C, 5S and the most recent 6/6 plus and 6S/6S plus each providing a unique fulfillment that would be preferred by different customers from different demography. The above series differs in features and prices and thus, catering for the need and preferences of different customers based on their demography. The newest release (series 6) focuses more on technology advancement and thus they may highly be preferred by highly educated and those that have a high level of income. Other such as series 4 focuses more on middle income level individuals in the society. The phone features make it suitable for people of different demography and interest and thus, it is widely marketable (Gaulle, 2014).
The market is also segmented based on rate of usage where by some people can be classified as heavy users, light users, medium users and non-users. In this regard, heavy users are more probable to purchase the product as compared to light users or even medium users. In this case, medium and heavy users should be targeted since they stand a higher chance of purchasing the device than light and non-users (Panda, 2009). iPhone market is also being segmented based on the benefits the product gives to the consumers. Individuals purchase smart phones for different purposes which include social interactions, accommodation of different applications based on the users preference and others since product has a high level of reliability and simplified system. In this regard, different customers will be interested to the same products due to different benefits they enjoy by using the product based on their interest in life. Psychographic segmentation is employed where by the company only focuses on social status of its customers. The company basically focuses individuals in the middle and upper class who can afford to purchase their product. iPhone is quite expensive for low class individuals and thus, the company only focuses on the well-educated working class, business men and women and other individual who affords a higher lifestyle.
The company also segments its customers into three customers groups that include high loyalty consumers, social acceptance oriented and technical oriented. Loyalty customers involve those customers who love the brand and that will always support the brand despite of the cost or other challenges. In technical oriented customers the company focuses on customers who are attached to the new functions and designs of the product. The social oriented customers involve customers that are attracted by social features integrated in the iPhone products. The primary target customer segment involves customers who are loyal to the company’s brand. The company basically focuses on this group as its first market place for all its new products.
Selection of Market Segments
There are various techniques used to establish the best way to segment the company’s market. The six criteria that the company should employ enhance market segmentation. These criteria include identity, nature of demand, measurability, size, responsiveness, and accessibility. Identity involves identify possible number of segments that are available in the market. Accessibility involves assessing how possible it is to reach the identified segments for distribution and promotion. Responsiveness involves evaluating how well the targeted customers react to the new product in the market based on mix marketing elements. Size involves the establishment of the market capacity and how much profit a segment can earn the company. The demand nature involves evaluating the quantity demanded by each segment. Measurability involves evaluating the consumer behavioral which may include comfort, quality, status and as illustrated by each segment (Panda, 2009).
Targeted Demographics profile
iPhone are developed with extensive range of features that include iTunes, integration of iPods facilities, internet facilities and other desktop user interface features. It also gives room for installation of a wide range of applications of all categories based on user’s interest and preferences. In this regard, the iPhone is developed with a certain group of consumers in mind. The extensive employment of social applications that include Facebook, twitter, instagram, MSN and music facility clearly demonstrates that one of the targeted demographic features is age where teenagers and young adults are highly focused in the development of this product. iPhones allows recording and also files transfer and thus, they can easily be used by university and college students in recording lectures and notes. Adults and children are also targeted since the product has games for the children, camera features for family use and ability to be employed in various daily activities such as getting directions through maps among others. This shows that the product targets people of all age. However, elderly people may have a problem using it due to touch sensitivity and a certain level of complexity as compared to other mobile phones (Sigal, 2010).
The device portability and its ability to hold a number of applications found in computers make it more viable for business individuals since it serves the communication purpose and also allows the access of vital document and transfer of data. However, the product is quite expensive as compared to other similar products in the market. In this regard, the product basically focuses on middle and upper class individuals and not poor people or low income earners. Most of iPhone customers are well educated and working class individuals with good salary and a higher lifestyle. Others include teenagers from rich families where parents have good jobs, involved in business or in political careers. Thus, the company considers a number of the psychographic aspect. Segmentation of the market is founded on various aspects that include attitudes, interests, activities, opinions, personalities, values and self-images of the consumers. Customers normally go for a similar product with different interest and preferences. The extensive features in iPhones give the company the advantage for obtaining satisfying a wide range of customers with different interest. However, the product mostly focused on those who treasure technology and love style, and prestige in life. Thus, the company targets more on women since they have a high chance of purchasing a device for prestige and class as compared to men. iPhone mostly targets people that are fashionable, that treasure technology diversity, quality, and that seek value for their money (Saini, n.d.).
The country is a bit discriminative with regard to the distribution of the product in the world market. Apple has only established iPhones retail stores in different parts of the United States, America, Europe and a few countries in Asia. Some of the involved countries include the United States, Belgium, Canada, Australia, Brazil, China, France, Japan, Germany, Spain, Netherlands, Switzerland, Sweden, the United Kingdom, Turkey and Italy. From this list, it is evident that the company does not have stores in countries that would be considered to be less developed or poor. The only country in developing nation which has been considered by the company is China which is among the countries that are developing at a very high rate. In this regard, the company basically targets well developed countries with a high population of individuals with substantial household earning that can enable them to purchase a new device or new product now and then based on their preference. The company has never considered developing cheap products that can be used by individuals from low social class. In this regard, possession of the iPhone is a clear indication that one belong to a higher social class.
Position Statement of the Company
According to the company, iPhone is a mobile device that is suitable for an individual who require a multipurpose single handheld device. iPhone provide widescreen video or audio player, and internet access. iPhone unlike other smartphones is ahead with ever-developing application collection for all purpose. In this regard, any who demand an advanced mobile device product should consider owning an iPhone. This can be demonstrated below using perceptual map.
iPhone is an Apple Inc. product that is highly treasured due to its quality and brand. The company has been in a continuous development of the brand since it first established its first iPhone brand in 2007; the company has managed to release 11 series. The new series are always more improved in the number of features and thus, they normally perform better as compared to all past series. The company uses this strategy to keep up to the customers changes in taste and preference. This has made the product to grow in popularity in the market. However, the production of the new series at every time makes the product expensive for all low earners. The group that can afford the product is quite minimal and its level of growth is also very limited. In this regard, the company should consider developing more affordable gargets that will have an extensive market place (Apple. com, 2015).