As opposed to most companies, Apple doesn’t typically rely on focus groups or market research to help guide its product development, and in an interview with Fortune a few years back, Apple CEO Steve Jobs explained why.
“We do no market research. We don’t hire consultants”, said Jobs. “The only consultants I’ve ever hired in my 10 years is one firm to analyze Gateway’s retail strategy so I would not make some of the same mistakes they made [when launching Apple’s retail stores]. But we never hire consultants, per se. We just want to make great products.”
And it makes sense if you think about it. If the subjects of market research studies were so in tune with where technology is going and what constitutes a great product, wouldn’t you assume that they’d already be involved in the industry to begin with? Apple has enough confidence in its hiring process and employees to trust its in-house people, and so far, you can’t really argue with its success.