IMEN301: Homework #2
the failure of
as a first mover
as a second
All connectivity and internet services
achieved critical mass much afterwere also
release of Apple Newton quite late.
Result: Limited Functionality of Newton
there is no
Newton was too ahead of its time
satisfy the requirements of consumers
at that time.
Result: Customers neglected it because
of its ambiguity in usage.
Key technological factors that resulted in product failure
Too many and unfulfilled information at a too early stage.
The marketing and PR strategy had completely been mismanaged and
led to Apple’s innovation failure. 2 major mistakes in the strategic
maneuvering can be identified:
1. The marketing announcement of Apple’s new device built stellar
market expectations but resulted in a product that sorely disappointed
1991: Apple Newton was presented as:
“The 1st personal digital assistant: handy w/ touch screen, handwriting-recognition and all-round applications for individual information
1993: Apple Newton was launched as:
an overpriced electronic companion: too large and heavy to be
pocket-sized and too short lifetime/ slow processing speed to be
handy, inaccurate hand-writing recognition w/ limited dictionary.
Result: Although the technology was still very innovative, costumers
expected a more revolutionary device.
2. In 1991, two years before the first device was shipped,
the concept of Apple Newton was introduced to public.
The early presentation forced the company to quickly
produce the first device with its very complex and wideranged software.
Result: Semi-finished product as pointed out in the first problem.
Newton had no switching cost,
going strictly by definition, since it
was an entirely new concept.
However, priced quite steeply at
$700, its value was often
questioned and compared with
relatively much cheaper paperbased planners and address
books that it was a replacement
for. Considering this, the Newton
can be said to have a
very high switching cost.
Too slow development cycle:
After Apple had released a very disappointing
MessagePad 100 they corrected and improved their
features (handiness, touch-screen, practical desktop
synchronization) and core competency (hand-writing
recognition) in MessagePad2000.
device due to
At that time
image of their
could not have
Network Effects: Newton was a first of its kind standalone platform
which was compatible with all the prominent document file formats
and a large variety of computer operating systems. – POSITIVE
Technology field: Although there were actors including Motorola
and Sharp in the market, most devices were produced by Apple.
The level of cooperation was higher than the level of competition. –
Regime of Appropriability and Regulation: Newton was not much
affected by either of these two factors, largely because to its
uniqueness and novelty. – NEUTRAL