What the new iPhone coming Sept. 10 is missing

It appears Apple is losing its ability to stoke wild consumer enthusiasm for its next upgrade.

By Jason Notte Aug 12, 2013 3:07PM
Apple iPhone 5 (© Apple Inc.)Remember when Apple's (AAPL) release of a new iPhone was an event on par with a Papal election or royal birth, and not just some predictable serve-and-volley with Samsung and Google (GOOG)?


Apple chief executive Tim Cook is giving consumers until September to jog their memories. All Things D reports that Apple is scheduled to make its next iPhone announcement on Sept. 10, citing unnamed sources.


That date is later than original estimates and is largely devoid of world-stopping, next-big-thing news about potential Apple TVs or watches. Instead, All Things D reiterates that the most likely new developments will be the streamlined iOS 7 -- which is already being tested -- and a lower-price version of the newest iPhone.


All of this comes during a somewhat murky period for Apple. Total iPhone sales jumped to 31.2 million last quarter from 26 million in the same quarter a year ago, according to Gartner (IT). But that wasn't enough to keep the iPhone's global smartphone market share from sliding to 18.2% from 22.5% over that span.


Phones running Google's Android, meanwhile, jumped from 56.9% of the global smartphone market in first-quarter 2012 to a whopping 74.4% in the first three months of this year. Samsung's share alone grew from 27.6% to 30.8% during that period.


With 1.2% fewer mobile phones being sold worldwide in 2012 than they were a year earlier, there's been some fear of a smartphone slowdown. Apple investors have been particularly wary, dropping the company's share price nearly 28% from a year ago and more than 35% since it topped $700 a share last September.


Apple's acquisition of fingerprint security company Authentec last year and the possibility of a fingerprint sensor might persuade consumers so far wary of the iPhone's notoriously wonky security. But that and a few token upgrades may be scarcely enough to energize a fan base that's been clamoring for faster innovation. In recent years, iPhone upgrades have become as pedestrian as the app updates that show up on the phone's App Store page.


The wondrous advances of Retina displays, high-definition cameras, motion control and universal connectivity have dissolved into mundane tweaks.


In turn, the iPhone has dwindled from a technological and cultural phenomenon to yet another bit of consumer utility. With its market exceptionalism gone, the iPhone now finds itself on an increasingly crowded shelf. In a global marketplace where price and utility are prized over design and exclusivity, it's little surprise that the biggest iPhone revelation of September may be that it's just like everyone else -- price tag and all.


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20Comments
Aug 12, 2013 9:09PM
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"What the new iPhone coming Sept. 10 is missing"

 

Interested customers with actual money.

Aug 12, 2013 5:22PM
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I am happy w iphone. You don't have to be a software engineer to enjoy it!
Aug 12, 2013 5:54PM
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What's it missing? Other than a reason for being?
Aug 13, 2013 8:47AM
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I laugh at the ignorance amongst the "tech" groupies.  For as much as they know, they're sheep just like the rest of you "americans".  Buy the next new thing and walk around thinking you're the greatest thing on this planet.  Until 6 month later when the process repeats all over again.
Aug 12, 2013 4:49PM
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Apple has helped ease the recession by developing a new industry of screen repair centers in malls across the country.

 

I'm sure this one will keep them busy too.

Aug 13, 2013 9:50AM
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I agree the only thing the iPhone is missing is the terrible Made in China Quality.
Aug 12, 2013 9:15PM
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Note that the development time for these things is such that we're still basically seeing the Steve Jobs' Apple Products.  Staying far in front of the competition requires too many home runs year after year.
Aug 12, 2013 4:21PM
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The author really doesn't understand Apple or the market for their products.
Aug 13, 2013 9:00PM
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If the iPhone was made to be water/dust resistant like the new galaxy4 it would be pretty much perfect for me. There has to be a way to make a phone that won't shatter when dropped or fry everything inside when wet. I am an iPhone owner and I love it...I just wish they would improve their durability.

Aug 13, 2013 9:35AM
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This is a biased review. msn IS Microsoft and looking out for it's own product. IF it was not for Apple we would not see the smartphones as they are today. Innovators  with ground shaking deveolpments are always copied. Those that truly know the technical difference will agree the IOS is a far supirior  operating system. I will stick with the original, everyone else can deal with the window phones.

Aug 13, 2013 5:14PM
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Did they ever fix their mapping software?
Aug 12, 2013 5:00PM
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What I'm hearing is that there are a lot of look alike's but few preform as well.  A lot of buyer's remorse about not getting an Apple I-phone.  Seems the product longevity is good for the i-phone as consumers replace the cheaper knock-offs.  You don't need a lot of hype when your biggest competitor put out a product like Windows 8.  If you consider that Apple's biggest threat could be Google, you might want to hold your cards a little closer to the table.
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