First the disclosures: I am not an Apple user fan. But I admire ‘design’ aspects of the products.
Apple’s success is design led (with spend in tech to back that). Much has been written about this. To many it appears that Apple does not mind limitation on its market share (due to price levels and or proprietary nature) since it gets better margins.
Coming to its strategy I see following factors
1. Limited market share (premium – exclusive positioning) is great for branding and can be a valid strategy if you have ability to unleash product after product that users love.
2. This ability is by no means a given thing even if Steve Jobs is around.
3. Windows or MS is not a great factor -they might sink under the weight of their success.
4. Google docs Android or Linux may change landscape once again.
5. If Apple’s product creation waves peter out, it is in a dangerous game of having to fund your ‘attitude’
6. Who knows tide may turn against the current absurd patent regime (read a fortnightly in BS) due to shift of center of Gravity from western civilizations.
7.In any case today there are many non-Apple touch screen based devices and Apple’s uniqueness will wear off unless it keeps come up with something new.
8. It may be the sign of times that Apple had to open of API for Iphone to encourage third party applications. But according to some mobile application developers, it is a pain to deal with Apple.
That’s the way things appear to be at this time. What do you say?