Transfer Pricing Associates

Apple's Biggest Threat

post Tuesday February 25, 2014

Tags: apple, jawbone, threat


The biggest threat of Apple right now is not Google or Amazon, it is a company called Jawbone, creator of the Jambox wireless speaker and the Up fitness band. It is one of the top starting technology companies among Dropbox and Square. Jawbone is about to move into a new product  category by closing a $250 million investment, giving the company a higher profile IPO. Jawbone’s main goal is to produce innovative gadgets, the same way Apple has been doing.  Apple, however, is struggling to create new gadgets over the past few years.

Founded in 2002, the rise of Jawbone took a lot of time. The company still needs venture capital, which shows that the products of Jawbone are not making enough money to sustain their business. However, Silicon Valley is still expecting great things from the company and the latest investment proves that. The reason is that each new funding caused a new invasion of Jawbone into a new product category, such as the Up.

The difference between Apple and Jawbone is that Jawbone’s products are warm and squishy, while the products of Apple are cold and metallic. Jawbone is looking to make a big move on the smartwatch market, so the competition for Apple will be even bigger now. Because of the differences in design, Jawbone has an advantage, the world is moving from gadgets with screens to more direct interactions.

Jawbone’s biggest strength is creating objects you can directly interact with in the physical world. Furthermore, personal electronics are rapidly moving into the world of home automation and wearables. Smartphones and tablets are becoming less of a priority for tech companies. Google knows this and bought Nest for an astounding $3 billion in  January, which makes thermostats and smoke alarms connected to the internet. While Apple is watching Jawbone gain ground, that is starting to look like a unwise plan to hold on to, because Jawbone is a promise for the market of personal electronics.  

Just when you think it could not get worse for Apple, the stock price of the company has fallen in the past few months. Investors think that the company is not capable of making decisions without Steve Jobs and that is why it takes so long for Apple’s smartwatch to arrive. And while there is chaos in Apple, Jawbone is already making moves on the market of wearables.

For now, Jawbone is still a small company. However, Google is also interested in moving into the ‘internet of things’ and if they buy Jawbone, the company suddenly becomes a big player on the market. Before the acquisition of Nest, Apple was not worried about Google as competition on the hardware market. Although there are no signs of Google actually planning to buy Jawbone, the idea of Google having two big personal technology creators will make Apple nervous.

One solution for Apple is to simply purchase Jawbone itself, but Jawbone is valued at more than $3 billion after the latest investment and that is more than Apple has ever spent on an acquisition. Although the price is very high, investors will be pleased and inspired by the acquisition of a new company. 

Source: wired

Image courtesy of Renjith Krishnan  / 

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