An Apple a Day…

Call me late to the game, but I wasn’t one of the eager thousands in Singapore who pre-ordered the latest iPhone 5 online beforehand. However, earlier this week, when I decided to source from my nearest local retailer to find out more about the new iPhone 5 deals, to my surprise I found that the queues were incredibly long (I should have expected that given the huge popularity of iPhone users in Singapore). In the end, I gave up after having spent an unbearable hour queuing for a ticket number.

I’ve always wondered why avid iPhone users (myself included, having owned all the versions except the 4S) are so eager to switch to a new phone despite the current one still working perfectly fine. I guess one reason could be that new iPhones are released every 1.5-2 years, which is the average duration of a typical phone contract at your local retailers. Another could be from the strong brand position that Apple has in the smartphone market that leaves people wanting more.

Some may call me an iPhone junkie, but like many others I want the newest toy in the market. Here are a few key standout features for iPhone 5 from a marketing lens.

1. Key features (new/updates)

  • Larger screen
  • Worldwide LTE (4G)  – not available across all markets
  • New A6 processor
  • Retina display brings 44 percent more color saturation
  • Improved camera

Marketing Impact:

  • More real estate for creative executions.
  • LTE connection enables faster browsing, faster download speeds, and better viewing for video.
  • Clearer display means better pictures and ultimately truer product representation.
  • Better camera means more picture sharing and opportunities for integration with social content sharing platform.

2. Siri takes on more with iPhone5

  • Pull up sports and movie information.
  • Able to post Facebook updates and tweets for you.
  • Launching apps by command.

Marketing Impact:

  • With the rise in voice search, brands need to leverage their SEO efforts.
  • Ensure all assets are SEO optimized from the brand site to Google Places, and reviews, etc. This should help increase your chances of showing up on Siri’s results.

3. Apple iOS6

Key features:

  • Apple Maps – currently debatable.
  • iCloud Tabs allows users to access open Safari windows from other Apple devices.
  • Shared Photo Stream allows users to quickly share photos and subscribe to friends’ streams.
  • Passbook allows users to store event tickets, boarding passes, gift cards, and loyalty cards.

Marketing Impact:

  • We already know that consumers use multiple devices to complete tasks and with iCloud tabs. Brands may start looking at cross devices strategies.

Passbook is the way to store your boarding passes, tickets, coupons, gift cards, and more in one place. With Passbook, you can scan your iPhone to check in for a flight, get into a movie, or redeem a coupon.

In China, QQ movie ticket app launched the passbook functionality. Once you buy a ticket for a movie within that app, you receive an option to Send to my phone or Add to Passbook. If you add to Passbook, you get to see a ticket containing a QR code in your Passbook app.

Passbook will provide a new way for consumers to respond to offers, interact with brands through promotions and loyalty cards, and eventually become familiar with the mobile transaction behaviors. It will be interesting to see what brands in Singapore jump on the Passbook bandwagon.

Food for thought: How will these new apps bring iPhone usage to a whole new level?


Science and nature image on home page via Shutterstock.

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