Apple Is Doomed In 2018

Chromebook sales are on fire in a market that Apple used to dominate: schools. Chromebooks now have an astonishing 58% market share in K-12 schools. Even my kids use Chromebooks. Their school uses Google’s cloud-based word processing, spreadsheet and presentation apps.

People looking at the Apple stock price through the eyes of iPhone sales are going to miss this incredible red flag.

You see, Apple’s brand, reputation and customer loyalty begin with kids using its products.

I believe that Apple’s seeding schools with computers set the platform for Apple’s success. By the 2000s, those kids had jobs and money, and had formed a connection to Apple because their first exposure was through the company’s computers.

Steve Jobs confirmed this in a 1995 interview:

One of the things that built Apple IIs was schools buying Apple IIs. … We realized that a whole generation of kids was going to go through the school before they even got their first computer, so we thought the kids can’t wait.

Now Google is forming that relationship with kids. Already my kids and their classmates are learning to use Google by using voice commands instead of typing.

Amazon is forming that relationship with kids as well through the use of its Echo devices and Alexa platform.

The Innovation Race

Using voice instead of a keyboard is a revolutionary shift in how we use computers. This is a revolution you can see unfolding slowly right now through the sales of speakers that connect to cloud platforms like Google Assistant and Amazon’s Alexa.

Apple had the lead in this market when it introduced Siri in October 2011. However, since then, it stopped innovating and improving Siri. It let Amazon and now Google overtake it.

And I believe that because Apple’s focusing on tinkering rather than innovation, Amazon and Google’s lead are only going to increase while the price of Apple stock declines.

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