This marketing research report presents the findings of the iPhone market. The report is based on the Apple Company and the research that was carried out was on the iPhone 3GS. Apple Inc. was set up in the year 1976 and by that time it was called “Apple Computer Company”. This is an American multinational technology company. The original name of the company was changed in the year 1977. This was carried out with an intention of engaging in the expansion of consumer electronics (Linzmayer, 2004: 300).
The Apple Company offers the products that are known the world over and these products include; iPhones, iPads, iPods, and Macintosh. The goal of this company is to offer to the customers the personal computers which are the best all over the world (Stanford, 2010: 1). Among those products this company has given out to the market in recent times is the iPhone 3GS. This new product is an improvement on the product the company had earlier offered to the market, iPhone 3G. iPhone 3G and iPhone 3GS are similar in appearance but the difference is that the iPhone 3GS has internal features that are much more developed and this new product has a double speed as compared to the iPhone 3G.
There exist other products that have been produced by the rival companies in the market which are offering stiff competition to the iPhone 3GS. These competing companies have been making the necessary efforts to capitalize on the weaknesses that the Apple Company has in the product design. They have come with similar products and improved on particular features that they have identified the Apple Company has not developed in the iPhone 3GS.
This research was aimed at trying to find ways of avoiding this problem by trying to establish the areas there might be possible weaknesses in regard to the iPhone 3GS design. Following this, this report offers some recommendations whose implementation will go a long way in trying to enable the Apple Company to remain competitive in the market and be a leader.
The main objective of the marketing research carried out was to identify any possible flaws that can be identified in the iPhone 3GS. Other companies competing with the Apple Company have been capitalizing on the innovative power the Apple Company has by waiting for the Apple Company to produce a new product and then they try to identify the possible flaws in this new product and they improve on this. Such steps by the rival companies render the innovative power of the Apple Company null and void. In order to come up with clear research, this main objective was narrowed down to some specific objectives which include;
- To identify the way people perceive the iPhone 3GS.
- To find out the improvements people would wish to be done on the iPhone 3GS.
- To identify whether there are any new features the customers would wish to be added to the iPhone 3GS.
- To find out the approximate percentage of those people who are currently using the iPhone 3GS.
Hypotheses were set up for this research in order to be tested. The hypothesis for the research included;
- People perceive the iPhone 3gs as the best iPhone on the market.
- Customers would wish to have some improvements to be carried out on the iPhone 3gs
- No new features are to be added on the iPhone 3gs.
The marketing research involved both primary data collection as well as secondary data collection.
Primary data was used to supplement the secondary data. This data was very much important in the research since it served to establish such issues as the people’s attitudes and opinions, and the awareness people had as well as knowledge about the iPhone 3GS. More so, the primary data served to establish people’s lifestyle and psychological characteristics and the intentions they had in making their purchases of the iPhone 3GS as well as the motive which is a better predictor of a person’s behavior in time to come. The people’s behavior was also identified through the use of primary data.
In this marketing research, the survey method was used in which several respondents were interviewed. Samples were chosen from ten states of the United States of America. The large business organizations were targeted as well as the learning institutions especially the colleges. The sample size comprised 1,500 respondents. The people who interviewed were in the age bracket of 18 years and 55 because this group was seen to have a higher likelihood of being familiar with the iPhone 3GS. The questionnaires were used as well as the personal interviews in order to get clear information about the issue at hand.
Secondary data was used in this research. This data is of advantage in that it plays a major role in saving both money and time. The secondary data that had been earlier on collected for other purposes in regard to the Apple Company products but that seemed of some relevance to the current research was checked. The secondary data that was internal to the Apple Company was also obtained.
Numerous measures were employed in performing secondary data evaluation. Before relying on the secondary data in this research, the secondary data at hand was evaluated to see its usefulness to the research study. It was also ensured that the secondary data to be used as the current that was applicable to the time period under consideration. It was also ensured that the data had to be having as minimal errors as possible and the level of accuracy was reasonably high. Consequently, the Original data’s purpose was to be set up. All these criteria were meant to ensure that the secondary data was to be of great use in the marketing research and not irrelevant. The following section gives the secondary data that use used in this research.
A research was conducted at the time the Apple Company was just about to introduce the iPhone on the market. This research was undertaken by Markitecture (online survey) where a populace of 1,300 was sampled to find out the individuals willing to obtain the iPhone (when it comes to the market). The initial question that was posed to the respondents was whether or not they were not familiar with the iPhones; those that were not familiar with these were eliminated from the survey.
Those who were familiar with the iPhone were inquired about their general impression of the iPhone based on what they had observed as well as what they had heard up to the time of the interview. These people who were interviewed were asked for the reasons as to why they could buy the iPhone or why they could not buy it (Kane, Para, 3).
The survey findings showed that about 77 percent of those interviewed had some sought of familiarity with the iPhone. Among these familiar respondents indicated an overall positive impression although this impression was not overwhelming. Among these respondents, 41 percent had a mind that this kind of phone was an excellent product. On the other hand, 21 percent of them had a mind that this product was just fair or it was poor. Among those who were very much more familiar with the iPhone, 83 percent of them had a mind that this was a very good product or an excellent one (Kane, Para, 4).
However, despite a generally strong impression, the estimate carried out by this survey of adoption or trial of this new product among the consumers was 6 percent. 6 percent of the people would buy this new product in the year that would follow if they were made to be well much aware of the product as well as its availability. 89 percent (of those interviewed) accentuated that the possibility that they buy the new product was a half, and about seventy percent of them held zero chance of obtaining the iPhone. The reason given for not buying the iPhone among them was the cost of the iPhone which stood at position one. Those who pointed out the cost as an issue stood at seventy-five percent (Kane, Para, 4).
In another research conducted still in regard to the Apple iPhone, according to Vizu Business (2007: Para 1) the iPhone related polls were run by VizuAnswers on the partner networks it has and presented the results. According to these results, 57 percent of those people who were interviewed had a belief that the iPhone had the potential of changing the way people use phones just in a similar manner the iPod brought in change in the manner in which people listen to music. More so, according to this poll, 56 percent of those interviewed had plans to purchase the Apple iPhone. More so, out of these responses, sixty four percent of them made a claim that replacement of the MP3 they had would be carried out by the iPhone.
Pointing out to some weaknesses of the iPhone, Anonymous (The Nokia N8, Para) made a comparison of the iPhone 3GS with the Nokia N8. In the comparison, it was pointed out that the iPhone 3GS has some weaknesses in that it failed to offer camera resolution that is high having flash options. But for the case of the Nokia N8, this offers a 12 mega pixel that was projected to bring change in giving a definition to cameras of the cell phone.
More weaknesses of the 3gs iPhone are indicated in regard to the battery life of this iPhone. According to Chen (2009: Para 1), several people who own the iPhone 3gs are raising complaints about the battery life of this phone which is falling short of their expectations. According to these customers,
Key findings and recommendations
This research sought to establish any possible flaws in the features of the iPhone 3gs. To establish this, the investigation was carried out the basis of the narrower objectives. These narrower objectives included;
- To identify the way people perceive the iPhone 3gs.
- To find out the improvements people would wish to be done on the iPhone 3gs.
- To identify whether there are any new features the customers would wish to be added on the iPhone 3gs.
- To find out the approximate percentage of those people who are currently using the iPhone 3GS
In order to meet these objectives, both the secondary data and the primary data were used. The secondary data involved obtaining the information about the earlier researches that had been carried out in regard to the iPhones of the Apple Company as well as other products of this company. This secondary data was evaluated so as to ensure that only the data that is relevant, timely, as well as accurate was to be used. The primary data was collected through carrying out a survey in which people were interviewed. The sample size that was selected for the survey involved 1500 respondents. This sample size was considered to be the one that would facilitate the collection of the most accurate information in regard to the issue at hand.
After enough data was colleted, analysis was carried out in order to come up with clear analysis. While analyzing, the (raw) data was first changed into a better format. The data was later edited for any errors. This was followed by coding of the data to ensure conversion of the data that was edited in to symbols and numbers. As a final stage in regard to this, (data) tabulation was undertaken and categorized as appropriate. The key findings in regard to the objectives of this marketing research were as follows;
People’s perception of the iPhone 3gs
75 percent of the respondents indicted a positive attitude about the iPhone 3GS. They perceived this iPhone to as an excellent product from the Apple Company. They commented on the developed features of the iPhone is being great features. They generally commented the phone as being a great improvement of the 3G in regard to its speed as well as its large memory (going up to 32 GB). Those who did not indicate a positive attitude pointed out that the phone has some faults such as the battery life that is short and they also pointed out that the phone was expensive and they would rather to for products from other companies.
Improvements to be carried out on the iPhone 3gs
Many people who were interviewed in the survey suggested that the Apple Company needs to carry out some improvements in some of the features of the iPhone 3gs. The percentage of the respondents who came up with this suggestion was eighty percent. Among them, there were those who suggested that the battery for this iPhone is not strong enough and has to be improved in order for it to have a longer life. Other respondents who suggested that improvements be carried on the iPhone 3gs lamented about the Apple Company failing to offer a high resolution camera having flash options. The Apple Company, according to these respondents, needs to carry out this improvement. More so, forty percent of the respondents suggested that the camera resolution be improved.
Any new features to be added on the iPhone 3GS
When asked about whether or not some new features should be added to the phone, all the respondents suggested that the current features on the phone were okay. The only thing that was required was to ensure these features are improved so that they can serve the intended function in a most excellent possible. They had a belief that the Apple Company will have to utilize its innovative power to come up with some new features as time goes. They showed an appreciation in the innovation the Apple Company carried out in regard to coming up with the iPhone 3Gs.
Number of people currently using the iPhone 3GS
This is was another objective of the research and this served to establish in an indirect manner of people’s perception of the iPhone 3GS. Among the respondents that were interviewed, 8 percent of them were actually using the iPhone 3GS. It was also established by the research that about seventy percent of the respondents were having willingness to purchase the iPhone 3GS if the cost is looked at by the Apple company. Among these who willing to purchase the phone, 15 percent of them were not very much concerned with the cost but with the improvement of the features on the phone.
Conclusion and Recommendations
As it has been seen in the findings, the iPhone 3GS is generally perceived as an excellent phone. However, due to the competitors coming up with phones that have more improved features where the Apple Company has not considered, the Apple Company needs to take an initiative to carry out improvements on the features that customers seem to see as having some weaknesses. For instance, the battery life of this phone needs to be improved. More so, the camera resolution showed also be
looked at and the appropriate measures be taken like coming up with a high resolution camera having flash options. Also, for the company to remain competitive and attract more customers, the cost of the iPhone 3GS need also to be checked so that it may be affordable to the customers.
However, this marketing research had some limitations. For instance, this research was only limited within the United States of America and the yet the iPhone 3GS is as well used in other parts of the world. It is suggested that, in order to come up with a clear picture about the iPhone 3GS market, future research should be carried out in other parts of the World as well. This will serve to enable the Apple Company to penetrate in to the world market to greater level and win the competition. More so, more researches should be set up to establish whether there is a need to come up with more features in the iPhone 3GS to serve the customers in a better way.
Anonymous. “The Nokia N8.” best-mobile-contracts, 2010. Web.
Chen, Brian. “Battery tests confirm iPhone 3gs improvements, but complaints linger”. Wired, 2009. Web.
Kane, Cliff. “The Apple iPhone.” Markitecture, 2007. Web.
Linzmayer, Owen. Apple confidential 2.0: the definitive history of the world’s most colorful company, No Starch Press. 2004 pp. 300-305.
Stanford, George. “Apple history”. Apple Inc. 2010. Web.
Vizu Business. “Apple iPhone market research says it is a winner.” Vizu, 2007. Web.
- People’s perception of the iPhone 3GS
- Those having a positive attitude: 75%.
- Improvement on the features
- Need for improvement: 80%.
- Any new features to be added on the iPhone 3GS
- Need for the addition of new features: 0%.
- Number of people using the iPhone 3GS
- Currently using the iPhone 3GS: 8%.
- Those who wish to purchase the iPhone 3GS: 70%.
- Concerned with features and not the cost: 15%.