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New iPhones are innovative, but they are still iPhones...

17 Sep 13

"The new iPhones are innovative, but they are still iPhones," says Dr Ronald Klingebiel, speaking following Apple's iPhone 5S and 5C launch last week.

"Strategically, the direction seems unchanged."

Assistant Professor of Strategy at Warwick Business School, Klingebiel has consulted and researched the telecoms industry for more than a decade, and feels he is well-placed to offer comment on Cupertino's latest release.

"The lower-end iPhone is to address price competition in an increasingly commoditising market, but the likes of Lenovo and ZTE achieve sufficient quality at much lower cost," he says.

"At the upper end, the business model is about to change."

Klingebiel believes there is a chance that the majority of value capture, which had migrated from the handset to the combination of OS and app store, will move on to apps themselves, reducing the cut for middle men.

"New entrants are gearing up to prise open the tight lock between handsets, operating systems, and app stores: Sailfish, Ubuntu, Firefox, and even Tizen offer next-generation operating systems that support the trend towards interoperable html-based apps," he adds.

"This could lead to an unbundling of the industry value chain and reduce Apple’s possibility to extract value from the iOS-app store nexus."

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