We called this in our post on 9 Oct. While their buzz level in social media are high, Apple’s ability to delight users with the actual product as measured by Argus Insights Social Capital metrics, is falling, fast. The iPad Mini has failed to ignite the market and the iPhone 5 did little to deliver new experiences. Our data shows the market is falling out of love with Apple and in love with Microsoft (consumers love the Surface more than the new iPad or the Mini). This was the same pattern we saw when Apple over took RIM in smartphones, now Samsung is the best positioned to do this to Apple.
Bloomberg and others have widely reported on Apple’s recent 20% fall off their intraday peak of over $700 per share. What’s behind the market slowly falling out of love with our favorite fruit company? Apple’s recent product launches have not provided the boost in social capital needed to arrest the slide Argus Insights posted on recently. In fact, the iPhone 5 launched below the starting point of the iPhone 4s (remember how disappointed you were it in Oct 2011 it was not the real iPhone 5?) and continues to erode delight in the eyes of consumers.
Each new product launch is supposed to pour new social capital into the brand equity of a company by finding new ways to surprise and delight consumers. Not only did the iPhone 5 fail to breath new social capital into Apple, it failed to beat other recent mobile launches for the top spot in the smartphone market. Yes, sales are robust but remember that our metrics of social capital are proven leading indicators of sales volume. Based on our analytics, without a major injection of Social Capital, Apple will continue to lose mindshare and marketshare to other OEM’s.
The same is happening in the Tablet market. The long rumor and even longer anticipated iPad Mini is off to a slow start in the hearts and minds of consumers. While many consumers find it to be all that Apple promised it is still overall not offering the “condensed” magic Ive promises in the launch video.
In fact, as you can see the iPad Mini launched clustered in the same pack as the Nexus 7, Nook Table, and Kindle Fire HD. The iPad Mini’s social capital is increasing but still puts it below big brother iPad and the recently launched Win 8 RT Tablets.
Does this mean that Apple is losing it’s edge? No. It is hard to lead the market all of the time. MicroGoogSung is giving Apple a run for their money, spending more on design and user experience. If you contrast the launch events for the Microsoft Surface and the iPad Mini, Apple showed off more specifications and technology while Microsoft demonstrated user scenarios, what a shift! Apple has the war chest to reinvest in the user experience and drive their social capital back up. Their recent investments did little to drive new social revenue in the hearts of consumers and the street is punishing them for this.