by Joe White
May 29, 2013
At AllThingsD's D11 conference on Tuesday, May 28, 2013, Apple CEO Tim Cook explained the reasons behind the company's current "one-a-year" iPhone strategy, adding that future models at varying price points could ultimately launch. For some time now, critics and analysts have argued that Apple must move towards launching both a low-cost "budget" iPhone handset, and a large-size "phablet" smartphone, with each new addition complementing the company's popular flagship iPhone which presently sees a year-on-year upgrade. In both capacities, Apple's smartphone would therefore be able to better compete against the Android-powered handsets manufactured by the likes of Samsung and HTC, which are available in both low-cost and high-end supersize variants. During his conversation with Cook, AllThingsD's Walt Mossberg addressed this issue, noting:
When you guys did the iPod, Steve joked it was good to have products that were above five percent share. One of the things you did was to create a range of iPods, not just last year's model. You wound up with this whole range of things. You haven't done that with the iPhone.Cook explained that making a smartphone, however, is unlike developing a range of iPod models. Essentially, the resources required to build a line of separate iPhones would be a huge task, and one the Cupertino, Calif. company isn't sure is necessary at this moment in time. While each iPod is targeted towards a particular user, and thereby serves specific needs, Cook said of the iPhone: "For the phone, that is the question. Are we now at a point to serve enough people that we need to do that?" Concerning the potential of a phablet-iPhone, Cook continued:
A large screen today comes with a lot of tradeoffs. Customers are clearly looking at the size, but they also look at things like "do the photos show the proper color? The white balance, the reflectivity, battery life. The longevity of the display."Despite the drawbacks, though, Cook didn't dismiss the option of developing a second iPhone model. While the company "hasn't so far," he added that this "doesn't shut off the future." As always, we'll keep you updated with further news as it becomes available. In the meantime, see: Is The iWatch Close At Hand? At D11, Apple CEO Tim Cook Says "The Wrist Is Interesting", Apple CEO Tim Cook Confirms Jony Ive's Design Influence On iOS 7, and Samsung’s Smartphone Revenues Outshine Apple In The First Quarter Of 2013.