Have you ever watched Steve Jobs introduce a new product? If not, you need to. No one does it better. Just go to Apple and click on the Macworld Keynote image and listen in. Or if you’d prefer, you can select just the introduction of the iPhone and watch a master marketer WOW you with value and innovation. Of course, the proof of the pudding is that the market responded rather favorably with 6 percent increase, immediately.
Now, even though I freely admit I’m a Mac guy, I wasn’t all that excited about the idea of a new phone (ho hum). My Palm Treo 650 is only a year old and gets the basics done. I’ve never been wowed by it, but it gets my email to me in case I need to respond quickly to someone when I’m not near my computer. However, I’ve never been impressed by what it can do–plus, the internet browser is a joke. In essence, it’s not remarkable.
So, with low expectations of what a phone can do, I was probably even more impressed by what the new iPhone can do. Now, in case you somehow missed the news yesterday, the iPhone is a radical redesign of the cell phone. You can see pictures, read text and see animations of the iPhone at work at Apple iPhone . It’s all very cool!
So, what kinds of things wowed me? Well, let me list a couple of the features that I find remarkable (Note: these are mostly top-of-the head recollections from watching the keynote last evening–in no specific order). That said, here we go.
- The iPhone integrates an iPod, a cell phone and an internet device in one product.
- It’s all screen. The keyboard is gone and only appears on apps that require a keyboard (which watching a movie or looking at a photo doesn’t require). By removing the keyboard, the iPhone can have a 3.5 inch color screen with incredible clarity.
- It’s built on a whole OS, Mac OS X, which opens up all kinds of opportunities for future additions.
- It integrates an actual web browser, Safari, so when you go to a web site, it looks like a website. Just tap the screen and the text enlarges (very cool!). You can also have multiple web pages open, similar to tabbing, and go back and forth between them.
- It automatically searches and connects to wi-fi or EDGE (no configurations needed).
- When you’re looking at a photo, you just pinch your fingers together or spread them out to zoom in or zoom out on a photo (way cool!). Or you use your fingers to flip through your photos.
- If you’re listening to your iPod and get a call, the music shuts off, you take the call, your friend needs an image, so while you’re talking, you send the photo by email to him/her, finish your call, hang up and your music comes back on where you left off. Like I said, "This is all way cool!"
- If you’d like to see a movie trailer before deciding what movie to see tonight, you click on the trailer. But, if you’d like to see it widescreen, you just turn the phone sideways and it automatically senses the move and changes to widescreen viewing (again, way cool). You decide you want to see, "The Good Shepherd." Therefore you touch the internet icon, click on your favorites (all your bookmarks are sync’d from your computer), touch fandango and you can see the movie times in your area.
- It comes with Google Maps completely integrated. Not only can you get directions, but let’s say you’re in an unfamiliar area and want to find a Starbucks. Just enter "Starbucks" and it will show you where the nearest Starbucks are. Then touch the one you’re most interested in and click on either directions or the phone icon and you can call ahead, automatically. In addition, you can also go to the satellite mode so you can zoom in and see an area as it really looks (hey, want to see your vacation hotel in the islands before you get there?).
- It has a voice mail option that lets you select the voice mails you want to listen to in the order you want to listen to them (i.e.no more having to go through five vms to get to the one you want).
- It has a true rich HTML email client. Plus the automatic syncing that occurs when you connect your phone to your computer, syncs your full contact list with all of their information (i.e. seamless integration)
- It’s fully multi-tasking so you can do any action while other actions are occurring in the background (i.e. like reading a web page while sending an email while listening to music all at the same time).
- And if you’ve never observed "Cover Flow" on iTunes or an iPod, you’ll be wowed by that as well (at least, I think it’s way cool :-).
Clearly, I could go on and on, but you get the point. There’s nothing like the iPhone. Now, I’m sure there are some who will say, "But my Smart Device (like the Palm Treo) can do most of these functions." To which I would say, "Well, the mp3 player existed before the iPod–but they’re not the same. The experience is completely different."
However, here’s my point. If someone has a Smart Phone (avg. price of $299 with a two year contract) and an iPod (avg. price of $199), they would have paid $498 for just an iPod (which isn’t a video iPod) and a Smart Phone (that isn’t that smart–remember, I’ve got one). Realizing that, what would you price the iPhone at (which has so much more value and technology than the other two pieces)? Well, here’s what Apple did. They priced it at $499. Brilliant. Add ten times the value for the same price–how can anyone say, "No!"
Now, on to your business or organization. How can you learn from Apple and wow your customers/clients/members with so much value that they can’t say, "No!"? What can you do to eliminate what bugs them (like small keys for a keyboard or internet access that looks like first grade) and add so much more value that they’re not expecting in order that they’re won over before you even get to the price. And then how can you wow them all over again with a price point they just can’t refuse.
P.S. A great staff discussion would be, "How can we add so much value to what we offer, that our customers/clients/members will feel compelled to take advantage of what we offer?" (i.e. this much value for that price, I’ve got to do this)
P.P.S. Do visit the Apple site and check out the iPhone for yourself. Even better, watch the Quicktime movie of Steve Jobs presenting it. Incredible!!!