Vector 21: Ben Bajarin on the state of global smartphones

Ben Bajarin of Techpinions talks to Rene about the growth of smartphones, the segments that are emerging, what marketshare really means, and what comes next with wearables, automotive, and more.

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Rene Ritchie

Editor-in-Chief of iMore, co-host of Iterate, Debug, Review, The TV Show, Vector, ZEN & TECH, and MacBreak Weekly podcasts. Cook, grappler, photon wrangler. Follow him on Twitter and Google+.

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Vector 21: Ben Bajarin on the state of global smartphones

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Really good cast guys. Thank you!
One question I have is regarding consumerism, these companies that should be "fighting for us" can obvious see what makes us tick and can figure out how to push our buttons to dance to their tune, why can we [consumers in mass] not play the same game to influence companies to meet our demands in a more complete fashion? Is it too difficult to get past the "me" mentality and overcome all the fanaticism of "our" brands? Would that even really drive a more productive market if we could?

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I don't always agree with what you say Rene, but this podcast is really really good! Gave me loads of ideas for my masters thesis in marketing. I "revisited" so many marketing concepts I learnt over the past year at university but this time applied to the mobile field which is what I love and what I want to work with. Ben Bajarin was really good as well of course! Fantastic job. Thanks.

This was an especially awesome podcast. I was particularly interested in the different market mentality in China and how local manufacturers tap into their needs. That was very revealing.

Rene, you have interviewed a string especially interesting guests lately. Thank you. This is what I come to iMore for, and which I find more informative than most other sites.

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very fascinating podcast especially the info on the global markets vs local markets and how it's all changing. Great stuff! :)

I was surprised by some of the things that were discussed in this podcast.

Wow, I didn't how that Google is kind of restricted in China. This just shows how difficult it is to infiltrate China's market.
And though, I'm kind of in the middle when it comes to Apple making a separate device to cater the market in China. It might be the most logical way to really increase their users in that country.

Oh, the classic why are you using

I took two things away from this show that I found really interesting:
1. That the market segments will begin to diverge and we'll start to see more specifically targeted devices for niche audiences. It makes sense, of course, that as more people adopt these devices more specific needs will develop. That makes me worry about feature compatibility across product lines.
2. Very interesting to hear about how the Chinese OEMS are advancing in their home country. What did Ben say, 36 app stores? Nuts. I'd also love to know if what he saw in the Chinese market, with low end device users buying up for their next purchase, also applies to the U.S. I feel like it has been the opposite here (probably due to higher disposable income?).

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Sooo good! I love Vector and how it inspires me for my work. Thanks Rene for all the great stuff you put out.

Cheers

Kalle

Perhaps I should go read Ben Bajarin's stuff elsewhere, but I would have liked some clarification/explanation on how he analyzes cellular markets. Specifically, how does the subsidization model affect things? The Apple iPhone is a luxury product, for sure. But it is available at the same price as all other phones, which is only $100 or $200 more than a terrible phone. How does this distortion play out and does he think a non-subsidized model would greatly change the American phone shopping habits? There is an interesting comparison point between the Nexus 5 for $350 but off contract to the iPhone for $200 on contract. Does he use the unlocked price of the iPhone to say it is a luxury item?

Other countries skew more towards phones without a contract, so does this affect the iPhone penetration a bit too? I would assume so, but perhaps it is already so much of a luxury product that people buying it will do so at nearly any price.

Good show. Keep it up.