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Bryan M. Wolfe
| October 11, 2011
After Siri's Success, Who Should Apple Target Next?
With Apple reporting that one million iPhone 4Ss were sold in the first 24 hours, it probably isn’t too early to call the latest iPhone a success. Should Apple thank Siri for this and if so what does that mean for the company going forward? In other words, who should Apple gobble up next? We've got some thoughts. Let’s be honest here: Many of us were underwhelmed by the iPhone 4S announcement. And no, this wasn’t because – as we found out later – Apple executives were decidedly glum at Tuesday’s show, since they knew Steve Jobs was near death. No, we were underwhelmed by Apple’s newest handset because it wasn’t the long-rumored iPhone 5 with its thinner form factor. No worries, apparently. Since last week’s announcement, the iPhone 4S has surpassed the iPhone 4’s preorder sales for the first day by 400,000 units. While we still don’t know who is buying the iPhone 4S (that will come later), we can conclude that the introduction of the Siri voice command has something to do with the iDevice’s strong sales. After all, besides significant hardware advancements, Siri’s inclusion is one of only a few software changes that differentiates the iPhone 4S from its predecessor. When Apple purchased Siri in 2010 for $200 million we all knew the company’s voice technology would eventually make its way to future iDevices. However, none of us probably thought that 24 hours in, the Siri purchase would have paid for itself. And yet, it did. According to TNW:
Sales of Macs, iPads and iPhones before the iPhone 4S preorders opened would have easily surpassed the $200 million figure that Apple will have earned in one day of sales (when in reality it will have made much more when including unlocked sales in Europe and Canada), but it shows that if it had any doubts the new contextual personal assistant would fail to impress, it took Apple just 24 hours to recoup the money it invested in the company that developed the technology. Impressive.So after Siri, what’s next for Apple in the acquisition department? As we suggested in June, Hulu Plus could be a perfect way for Apple to get into the streaming video business. While more recent reports suggest Apple isn’t going after the business, perhaps they should. In addition, we love the idea of Apple acquiring what’s left of Barnes & Noble and open Apple Stores in other areas in the country. From there, perhaps Apple could finally buy Adobe and use its technology at will in future iDevices. And no, we’re not talking about adding Flash here! Finally, with Netflix imploding perhaps now is the time for Apple to purchase this once-proud company. Its stock price is in the tank, which makes it a good deal for any would-be buyer. Imagine buying streaming subscriptions directly from within iTunes! Now, wouldn’t that be nice? What do you think? With the Siri acquisition an obvious success, where should Apple look next? Let us know by using your comments below.