Is Apple having an identity crisis?

Posted by Trent Nouveau

Apple has single-handedly redefined both the mobile and PC markets over the past decade with a number of iconic devices, including the iPod, iPhone, iMac, iPad and MacBook Air.

However, at least one analyst now believes that Apple may be experiencing an identity crisis as it seeks to both expand and defend its existing market share.

"Apple historically has played the role of underdog, beginning with its niche Mac status after losing out to Windows," UBS analyst Steve Milunovich explained in an industry note obtained by ZDNet.

"The iPhone and iPad are the first times Apple has had a leadership position drawing significant and competent competition."

Indeed, Apple managed to avoid serious competition in terms of the iPod, but is currently in a defensive position as it faces off against Google and Samsung.

"It doesn't appear to be in Apple's DNA to cover market spaces just to get revenue," Milunovich opined.

"Yet now that the company is so large due to iPhone success, investors are clamoring for product expansion with [TVs, smart watches, as well as] larger [and] lower-priced phones  with Android gaining favor."

Still, Milunovich warned against expecting too many revolutionary products from Apple too soon.

"The only way out might be innovation in new categories, which will require investor patience. Most companies would rush out a 5- to 6-inch phone; Apple probably won't," he added.