Apple Computer history is full of highs and lows, which is what we would expect in a highly innovative company. They evolved throughout the years into an organization that is very much a representation of its leader, Steven Jobs. Apple made several hugely successful product introductions over the years. They have also completely fallen on their face on several occasions. In 1997 they struggled while Jobs was not a part of the organization. Apple reached a point where many thought they would not survive, (case study).
Well, times changed. Less than 10 years later, Business Week ranked Apple as the top performer in its 2006 Business Week 50. Apple attributes their recent success to robust sales of iPod music players (32 million in 2005). They are optimistic about the economies of scope with media giants, such as Disney and Pixar. (Business Week)
Apple rarely introduces a new type of product. Thus, instead of being the pioneer, they are experts in refining existing products. Portable music players and notebook computers are examples. Apple increases the appeal of these products by making them stylish and more functional. They now appear on the brink to make significant steps in the home computer market. Apple did create a total digital lifestyle whereby the home is a multimedia centre.
This analysis of Apple Inc uses Porter’s five forces to examine the external environment; elements of a PEST analysis to examine the threat levels in Apple’s market environment and the SWOT analysis to examine Apple’s internal environment. Even though the analytical format is of various models, certain points are broken out for particular attention below. First, in order to gain an understanding of the company’s macro environment, an understanding the nature of Apple’s business is examined. Apple is basically involved in two businesses: the computer market and the media and entertainment market. Its approach has been to integrate its new products around its core industry in an effort to provide a digital life style that includes not only its line of computers but its new products such as the iPod, iPhone and the iTunes.
The various models are presented and then related to the market that Apple inhabits. Since the five forces are dynamic and also base on the fact that Apple’s responses are dynamic, an assessment of apple’s SWOT analysis is presented in light of those forces to its markets. The analysis also outlines the impact of the external forces that leads to some of Apple’s internal responses.
Finally a conclusion is offered base on the results of the analysis. Several issues are outlined to determine what actions Apple Inc needs to act upon or be sensitive to if it is going to be successful in years to come.
External Analysis Demographic segment:
The world population estimation for 2005 was 6,449,000,000 people and for 2010 the world population is 6, 812, 000, 000, the majority of the growth is concentrated in Asia. (www.census.gov, 2010). Increases in population combined with the advances in technology will continue to drive increased sales in future computer markets (Factfinder.census, 2004). Refer to appendix 1(a) for more details.Economic segment: Even though, computer requirements are increasing across the globe. Data collected and shown on Table 03 Appendix 1 (c) has all but 4 countries increasing the number of computers being used per 1000 individuals within each respective country. The data was not restricted to PC type computers but listed computer use in general so Apple computers were included within the data gathered even though it is undergoing a market share loss of computer sales. Exports felled from $9.6 billion in 2000 to $8.8 billion in 2001 with Canada being the largest regional market for US computer sales (23% of U.S. exports). Asia and Europe accounted for two-thirds of the total exports. Imports of computers...