Original Link: http://stratechery.com/2014/apple-stores-innovators-dilemma/

Ben Thompson:

the truth is that Apple doesn’t sell phones (or computers or tablets); they sell iPhones. And iPhones are not just hardware, but also the software that runs on them. But even that is missing the whole picture. To buy an iPhone is to buy into an experience that includes everything from advertising to following the news to visiting a store to buying a phone to unboxing to downloading apps to visiting a genius and so on and so forth.

It’s no accident that the Apple Store appears twice in that sequence. It’s a critical part of the Apple experience that increases the value of an iPhone (and Mac and iPad) and works in a very specific way to counteract over-serving and help prevent disruption.

You’ll have to read the rest of Ben’s article, the central focus wasn’t really about the Apple experience, but these two paragraphs really stood out for me.

In today’s era of copying everybody else, it’s the Apple experience that Apple’s competitors can’t replicate, no matter how hard they try. When you combine that with the infrastructure of services that Apple has setup for its products, it becomes difficult to understand how it can be matched.