Introduction Background and summary This article present the story of Steve Jobs and it’s Apple company through two aspects. From the company history perspective and the product industry perspective. On company history side: Apple was founded by two Steves. Apple board later fired Jobs and gradually went near bankruptcy. Till 1997, Apple brought back Jobs and became the most valuable company in the world in 2012. On the product industry side, Article dig into the field of personal computer with macintosh, mp3 industry with ipod, music industry with itunes, mobile industry with iphone and app store, tablet industry with ipad.
Also mentions ebook industry and icloud. Apple’s challenge * Competitions from all industries: Android on Mobile OS, Samsung on phone and tablet, Spotify on music, Microsoft on PCs, Amazon on ebooks and tablet. * Labor issue in China * Patent suits from Samsung, HTC, Android and so on. * Future role as maintaining a innovative leader. SWOT analysis for Apple: Strength * Most valuable brand, simple to operate, high customer loyalty. * Close platform and share between all apple products retains customers to other apple product line. Focused R&D driving innovation & consolidating its market position * Marketing. Clever and takes advantages of people's frustrations with other hardware. | Weakness * A company’s success tightly related to it’s founder facing a fact of the future without Steve Jobs * Recent released apple products show less innovation gap compared to rival’s. * Proprietary and controlling hurt wide adaptation of its hardware, especially computers, where it has a relatively small market share. * Similar attributes of different product line, interior competition. Opportunity * Strong growth in smartphone and tablet markets to boost Apple’s revenues * Introduce a new mobile advertising platform for iphone, itouch, ipad which represents an opportunity for new revenue sources. | Treat * Competitors are catching up with apple technologies, making apple less competitive on leading technology’s perspective. * Involved in several legal actions, including lawsuits alleging patent infringement and antitrust violations. | The impact of new technologies on business In terms of threats, new technologies induces competition, make inferior technologies running out of business.
In terms of opportunities, new technologies create chances on taking over other player’s market share. 2) Discussion questions and answers Q1. Historically, what were Apple’s major competitive advantages? (Please list them and explain briefly with one sentence each where relevant. ) Competitive advantage occurs when an organization acquires or develops an attribute or combination of attributes that allows it to outperform its competitors. * 1978-1980 Apple? First easy-to-use computer was unique in the market, few or no competitors can replace their position. * 1985-1990 Desktop publishing and education
Apple offered a complete desktop solution including hardware, software and “plug and play”peripherals. Competitors such as IBM are not ease to use. * 1998 iMac Due to iMac, Apple’s sales outpaced the industry’s average for the first time in years. A simple apple is back * 2001 iPod Early MP3 players only stored an hour of music, the first iPod stored up to 1,000 songs and retailed for $399 * 2003 iTunes Music Stores The iTunes store was the first legal site that allowed music downloads on a pay-per-song basis. It has vast music selections and it’s easy to use. * 2007 iPhone iPhone redefined what a phone is, a revolutionary 3. inch touch-screen interface placed commands at the touch of users’ fingertips without a physical keyboard. * 2008 App store Apple’s App Store was the first outlet that made it easy to distribute, access, and download applications directly onto the mobile phone. * 2010 iPad iPad made it a more seamless way to intertwine the software and the hardware than they are on a PC. * 2011 iCloud iCloud allowed users to synchronize seamlessly across multiple Apple devices by storing data, pictures, music, etc. , in one location on the Internet. Q2. Analyze the structure of the personal computer industry over the last 15 years.
How have the dynamics of the PC industry changed? 3 – 4 paragaphs From the last 15 years, personal computer industry was dominated by windows and Intel on an OS and microprocessors bases. Mac were performing great but owns a market share below 5% worldwide. On the PC manufacturer’s base, HP, Dell, Lenovo were among the top three manufacturers. HP bought Compaq in 2002, Lenovo bought IBM PC department in 2004. On the technology bases, * Late 1990s, USB start to appear * Late 1990s, DVD players started appearing on high-end PCs. * In 2003, 64-bit microprocessors start to emerge, 64-bit microprocessors gradually replaced 32-bit since 2005. In early 21st century, Wi-Fi, LCD monitor, multi-core processor and flash memory started to appear. 3) Apple’s future Since Oct. 2011, Apple has had a great performance without Steve Jobs. Apple’s main challenge remains to be the competition from all PC, Phone, tablet and music industry. Whether Apple can stay as a market leader and innovator remains to be tested. If Apple wants to keep it’s market leader role, then the innovation of technology must stay going. That’ the most important attributes that made today’s success of Apple.