Sunday, September 8, 2013

new product: ipad mini

The iPad mini was announced on 23 October 2012 and launched a week and a half later on 2 November.  After three iterations of the original iPad, Apple decided to enter the 7” tablet market.  The original iPad featured a 10” screen and was the market leader in that space.  Prior to his death, Steve Jobs absolutely refused to make a smaller iPad because he didn’t think the value was there for users and did not want to sell an iPad at the required lower price point.  New CEO Tim Cook decided to expand into this product area in order to bring Apple into the smaller tablet market that had been dominated by other manufacturers like Samsung.  In order to do this, suppliers for the new components needed to be identified.  Some parts, like the processor, would come from existing suppliers.  Others, like the smaller shell and screen, might need to be obtained from new suppliers if existing ones could not provide the required parts.

This is interesting since it’s not a completely new product, only a redesign of an existing one.  It also isn’t the first or last time a company has decided to redesign an existing product to appeal to customers in a different segment.  Do you think that companies will begin to rely more on product redesigns to capture market share instead of creating completely new products?

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