Apple own the conversation – but is it enough? #iphone6launch

Social insight into the iPhone 6 launch

With the dust having settled around the most talked about smart phone launch of the year, we have taken a look into how it fared against its competitors and how consumers have responded to it within the social space.

Despite a growing skepticism towards Apple’s ability to innovate amid stiff competition from their Android rivals (Samsung/HTC), they are still miles ahead of these competitors when it comes to generating conversation and excitement around their iPhone products. To put things in perspective, the iPhone 6 gained 81,739 UK mentions alone on the day of its announcement while the Samsung Galaxy S5 gained a meager 6,049 UK mentions in comparison. Launch day for each product mirrored this situation with the iPhone 6 generating 44,163 UK mentions and the Samsung Galaxy S5 peaking at 2,343.

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This was also reflected in sales with the iPhone 6 selling ten million units in its first three days while it took the Galaxy S5 a month to hit 11 million units. HTC’s continued struggle to stay relevant in the mass market is also very evident from the fact that they only had 2,974 UK mentions of their recent HTC One M8 on the day that they simultaneously announced and released it. Regardless of this apparent popularity divide, Samsung and the Android operating system are still retaining the majority of the market share due to their strategy of catering to all price points, as opposed to Apple who keep the iPhone in the upper brackets of cost to avoid devaluing the brand.
While fragmented across numerous pieces of hardware, this enduring popularity of Android over iOS, which continues to grow while the iOS share has fallen YOY, alludes to a growing problem for Apple which they must answer eventually in order to maintain their grip on the smart phone market. They must begin to take more risks and innovate instead of optimize. Since the launch of the iPhone 5 social media has been full of content poking fun at the product for bringing nothing new to the table and only making improvements on what was already there. The story is the same for the iPhone 6.

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This has the potential to become a real problem for the iPhone in the future as the interest of the masses can only be held for so long without being provided with any substantial advances in what their smartphone can do for them. Many techies are already firmly in the Samsung/Android camp due to the greater customization and open source nature of the operating system, but also because Apple seem to constantly be playing catch up to Samsung in terms of adapting their hardware and software to suit the ever developing desires of consumers. But despite this, Apple’s pre-established popularity and captivating branding still deems them the winner for the time being, even though Samsung has put out 37 promotional video campaigns during 2014 and Apple only six.

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Manufacturing is also becoming more and more of an issue for Apple as they repeatedly come under fire for the poor treatment of their Chinese workers, although the majority of their customers have been happy ignoring this so far. Reports of the iPhone 6 supposedly bending when kept in your trouser pockets have caused many customers to wonder whether or not Apple are really focusing on quality assurance during manufacturing or whether they themselves have become Apple’s QA testers as the first adopters of the new model. Fortunately for Apple, conversations around this issue have only comprised 5% of iPhone 6 mentions amid conflicting reports and videos ‘proving’ that it is or isn’t a problem.
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