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In recent weeks, Apple has taken a valuation hit on the back of its quarterly earnings release. Apple's financial reports show that average revenue per unit is declining, production costs are increasing, and sales growth is slowing down. Competition from the likes of Blackberry and Samsung (phones), and Google (Android operating system) is fierce. Blackberry has been on a downward valuation slide since 2011. We can add to this list: Dell (heading for privatization to regain its mojo) and Hewlett Packard.

It seems these companies have entered a "maturity" crisis, unable to keep pace with shortening product life cycles and the pace of innovation that established them. They seem to be moving into a common and not-always-successful high-volume, low-cost strategy. To stay in the game, these mature companies must re-ignite their focus on balancing innovation, market share and product/service margins.

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This document was originally published by Idaho Statesman. Copyright restrictions may apply.

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