Apple’s Plan for iPhone vs Japanese Market

Case Study Analysis Psy/322 March 11, 2011 Japan to Apple’s iPhone The Apple iPhone did not make as big of a splash in Japan as Apple’s had hoped it would. The projection to sell a million iPhones in Japan unraveled and sales were very low. People of Japan were already aware of cell phones with a 3G network, which the faster network had been around for several years, much longer than the United States. A few problems that Japan had with the Apple iPhone were the touch screens, the iPhone were not as advanced as what they could already get in Japan, and the iPhone could not purchase train passes as the other phones did. Emoji”, clip art that is used to create a more interesting and creative e-mail was also an application that Apple could not offer. Citizens of Japan have high complex standards and when it comes to technology Japan is known for being well head of its time. The iPhone just did not stand up to what Japan already had in their back pocket. Cell phone users in Japan are infatuated with photos, video games, and high light features. Apple iPhone could not compete with what a market already established in Japan from other cell phone makers. The competitors had already offered Japan everything they needed.
Japan made a mistake in trying to market the Apple iPhone in Japan at the time they did. In research they should have seen that they didn’t have everything that the Japanese wanted in a cell phone. Knowing Japan already had a 3G network that should have told Apple it would not be a new technology for the country. The people of this culture wanted everything at their fingertips and Apple didn’t have all they wanted. The Apple computers did well in Japan due to the technology is in the running with the other computers and they are similar.
IPod also did well in Japan markets and that was due to the product being affordable, slim, and available to the people of Japan. Pricing and the cells phone plans in Japan are very competitive and equates to low monthly expense for cell phones. The iPhones average monthly start around $60 dollars, which is much higher than competitors. The United States pays on average around $80 to $100 dollars for an iPhone plan. Many people of Japan also purchase their phones to use and the iPhone does not come cheap hen purchased. A large number of Japanese live with only a cell phone, so that cell phone needs to be everything in one. People of Japan do not want to use their cell phone as a personal computer and the problem with the iPhone is Apple relies on computers for syncing media and involving updates of software from the computer. ITunes is an example of an application that would require updates from a computer over time. Cell phones in Japan are about fashion as well and who has the most state of the art phone.

Japan is so advanced with their technology that something new is coming out every day, so carrying around a cell phone that has been out for a year is unacceptable. The technology is consistently getting better and better, which the United States fall further behind. Apple did not grasp the cross-cultural concept and get an international perspective prior to marketing the iPhone. Apple also should have researched the marketing mix for the country. Price would be to high for the iPhone due to what Japan already had in service.
The product did not have everything the consumer wanted on the product that would entice the consumer to purchase it. The place Apple wanted to move the product, which was Japan, already had the 3G network in place. Apple really did not have anything to promote that was different in the markets of Japan. The sheer functionality of the iPhone just did not make sense out of Japan. Mickey and Shark Fin Soup Shark fin soup is a popular soup item of Chinese culture that is usually served at big events such as weddings and banquets.
This soup is considered a luxury item and the soup may cost up to $150 dollars a bowl. The soup originally came from the Ming Dynasty many years ago and is an important part of the celebrations. When Disney wanted to serve the soup to the guests that were going to have their wedding at Disney Hong Kong, advocates came out to protest serving the soup. There is an international concern over the sustainability and welfare of the sharks that will be used to make the delicacy. There is also concern that because the cost for the soup is so high there will be a higher demand for the soup.
If the soup is in such high demand them the environmentalist have concern the sharks will become endangered. The Disney Company was trying to reach out to the people of Hong Kong and show an appreciation for the culture of their country. Disney wanted to offer the same items that other companies could offer to the people of Hong Kong. If Disney does not offer the Shark Fin Soup then the customers approaching Disney for their wedding will go somewhere else to receive the goods and service they want for the celebration.
With the guidelines that Disney would have strict guidelines being such a large corporation, they would not be smuggling in sharks to create the soup. Disney chose not to serve the shark fin soup due to the pressure of the environmentalists. Much of the pressure came from the hits to Disney’s corporate image. Disney did careful research and determined that the environmentalists had a valid point that linking shark declines in the largest shark species.
Disney felt the company needed to have the right balance with the cultural of Hong Kong and the conservation of the sharks. If I were a member of the Disney management team at the Walt Disney Company, I would not have the Shark fin soup on the menu for wedding in Hong Kong. Disney would lose more money by people boycotting the company then they would if Disney did not serve the soup. It is important for companies to research and know what they are dealing with before they make decisions that will affect a large group of people or animals as in this case.
There is so much more money to be made through ticket sales and all the other foods that are offered by Disney. The damage that might have been done by making the decision to keep the shark fin soup on the menu would truly out way the damage if they took the soup off the menu. References: Keith Bradsher, “Chinese Delicacy Has Disney in Turbulent Waters, ”New York Times, June 17, 2009, C1, C7 Yukari Iwatani Kane, “Apple’s Latest iPhone Sees Slow Japan Sales, “Wall Street Journal, September 15, 2008, B3

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