You have to admire the grandness of claims sometimes made by pundits. [Derek Thompson’s assessment] comes down to this:
> Apple’s core business is something that practically everybody wants to do (and can do): making phones and tablets. Amazon’s core business is something that practically nobody wants to do (or can do): build a massive online database and offline infrastructure to transport boxes from warehouses to hundreds of millions of doorsteps.
A later update comes in the form of a telephone call from Peter Misek, managing director at Jefferies & Company, who responded:
> Apple is an ecosystem. I’m an iPhone user. The chances I leave are minimal because I have all my music and photos and such on the phone. The inertia or friction of moving is fairly high.
Clearly, Amazon knows that my loyalty as a consumer is price-dependent. Unless they can move into a similar market space as Apple occupies, which is less so, they are going to have to watch always for competitors looking to play the one-downsmanship game that is so often retail. This is not impossible, but it is difficult, as department stores across America can attest. This is clearly why they are pushing so hard to develop their own ecosystem.
As always, the world is more complex than pundits make it out to be.
[Derek Thompson’s assessment]: http://www.theatlantic.com/business/archive/2013/02/why-amazon-is-special-and-apple-is-not-in-1-paragraph/272791/