Apple Makes The Best Jewellery But Is Not Very Green

The collected sales and marketing departments of the consumer electronics companies around the world are driving up the consumer anticipation to fever pitch for their latest technical wizardry. Promises that it will change the world, save more time than ever, make you more attractive to the opposite sex… and have unparalleled battery life.

And no one does this better than Apple. They have managed to penetrate the business by providing devices that are the electronic equivalent to jewellery. Now, please don’t think that I am an Apple bigot. I own multiple Apple devices, love their engineering (hardware and software) and applaud their marketing flair.

I am simply observing behaviour.

  • Jewellery does not have an ROI, desire is justification enough
  • Jewellery does not need a reason for replacement for a newer, nicer piece
  • Jewellery is admired and coveted by others
  • Jewellery purchases are not made by comparing the specification / price / value for money of other similar items from other manufacturers artists
  • Jewellery is bought from smart, glossy shops where helpful sales staff are on-hand, not off the internet
  • Jewellery is not recycled or upgraded
  • Jewellery has massive profit margins

Question. Can you replace the word Jewellery with the Apple iXXX in each case and the sentence still be true? Of course. More so for the consumer oriented devices – iPod Nano, iPhone, iPad than the Macbooks.

Now we agreed that Apple makes jewellery. But that is not a bad thing. The current world of trashy consumerism needs the beautiful things in life. I rather like the up-market, aspirational advertising of Belvedere Vodka – Living the Beautiful Life: Necessities are for Nicompoops.

But let’s not pretend that this is green. Recyling or upgrading – “Really darling!!” Who ever heard of a necklace where the gems could be replaced. An older model is simply discarded for a newer one. And the older one gathers dust in a box until it is thrown away. You couldn’t give it away. Who would want it – “I wouldn’t be seen dead with last year’s model, darling”.

Apple is set to make a killing this Christmas. And it deserves to. It makes products people clearly want. In a recent survey by Vouchercodes.co.uk of the Top 5 gadgets for Christmas 2010, Apple occupied the top 2 slots with the iPad
and iPhone4.

So does this mean that Apple is on or off my Christmas List? Absolutely on. I am moving to San Francisco with the family at Christmas and a trip to the Apple Store for an Apple 27″ iMac is the first item on the todo list.

Or maybe I should sort out furniture first!!

Ian Gotts is CEO and Chairman of Nimbus Partners, an established and rapidly growing global software company, headquartered in the UK. He is a very experienced senior executive and serial entrepreneur, with a career spanning 25 years. Ian has co-authored a number of books including “Common Approach, Uncommon Results”, published in English and Chinese and in its second edition, "Why Killer Products Don't Sell" and books covering Cloud computing from the perspective of both the prospective buyer, and the software vendor. Having begun his career in 1983 as an engineer for British Rail, Ian then spent 12 years at Accenture (nee Andersen Consulting) specialising in the project management of major business critical IT projects. During this time, he spent two years as an IT Director, seconded to the Department for Social Security (DSS), with a department of over 500 and a budget responsibility of 40 million pounds.