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Apple has responsibility to innovate, brand expert says

Apple has an obligation to innovate and needs the "next big thing" to stay relevant, brand expert Dean Crutchfield said Wednesday.

"You're Apple. That's your brand. We demand it from you," Dean Crutchfield said in an interview with CNBC's "Power Lunch."

"They have a responsibly to be that and to do that. So it's not what they're doing today, it's what they're going to become."



Tim Cook, chief executive officer of Apple Inc., speaks during an event in San Francisco, California, U.S., on Wednesday, Sept. 7, 2016.
David Paul Morris | Bloomberg | Getty Images
Tim Cook, chief executive officer of Apple Inc., speaks during an event in San Francisco, California, U.S., on Wednesday, Sept. 7, 2016.

On Wednesday, the tech giant unveiled its newest watch and iPhone 7, which no longer has a headphone jack and has an upgraded camera. Crutchfield called the event an evolution, not a revolution.

"They are great at spotting gaps in a market and then making them a market. And that's what they've done their entire history. I think here we're just seeing a design evolution of a phone," he noted.

While Apple has created a whole ecosystem, its founder Steve Jobs was a "genius" and a marketing man, Crutchfield said. Tim Cook, on the other hand, is an operations man, he said.

"Apple's already had a very strong vision in terms of its direction. I think at the moment it's a little unclear."

However, he thinks Apple is still the biggest brand on the planet.

"It all comes down to brands and that's where Apple is powerful. People love that brand," he said. "It's not a hardware company, it's not a technology company. It's more like a lifestyle company and a consumer brand and all the other players are not."

— CNBC's Jennet Chin contributed to this report.