1. Brief Introduction of Apple, Inc. and its International Business Apple, Inc. was founded in 1977 by Steve Wozniak and Steve Jobs in the U.S. At that time, the main product of the company was personal computers. After a success in the personal computer field, Apple started to expand their product area. They sold Macintosh, computer software, Pippin, video game console, Newton, world first PDA, iPod, mp3 player and so on. Some of their products were successful whereas others eventually failed. Both successful cases and failed ones contributed to Apple's current success, the status as the most innovative firm in the world. Their innovative idea with high technology and trendy design attracted customers globally. In fact, the brand image of Apple is related to its core competency, "creativity" and "innovation." In addition, "convergence" among Apple products is one of the core competencies of Apple. In other words, each of their products is related to one another or more:-For instance, Mac computer to Mac Operating System, iPod to iTunes music store. In this sense, once a customer buys one Apple product and is satisfied with it, he/she becomes a fan of Apple. It leads to a purchase of another Apple product in a series. This strategy is connected with their recent structural change, towards expansion of products to cover the whole IT industry. Through this movement, Apple is planning to establish the Total Information System (TIS). Recently Apple launched innovative product iPad, a type of advanced tablet PC. Likewise, Apple keeps changing to Total Information System firm with their core competency. 2. Current Status of Apple Inc.
Currently Apple Inc. takes different positions among their three main products� iPod, iPhone and Mac. At first, Apple took the dominant position in the world mp3 market. In 2006, iPod, Apple mp3 player, took 75.6% market share in the U.S and 5-6% of world market. Apple's tremendous market share still maintains with new innovative version of iPod. However, regarding iPhone, Apple's position is somewhat different. Since Press releases tons of articles about iPhone, it seems like the whole world is under iPhone fever now. Surprisingly, however, iPhone's current market share is not large. Nokia from Finland and RIM (Research in Motion) in Canada are market leaders, and Apple is catching them up as a third. It was concluded that, iPhone is in the star position according to BCG Matrix. The market share increased from 2.8% to 13.3% during merely one year. It is expected that Apple's market share in the smartphone industry will continue to skyrocket. Next, Mac, Apple's computer department, maintains current market share. According to survey of Gartner, Mac's market share grew from 8.4% in 2008 to 2009 in 8.7%. Although there are strong competitors like Toshiba, Dell, Acer, HP and many others, Mac is still stable in the PC market. In addition, because of Operating System related to Mac, Apple's real profit from Mac is quite large. In April, Apple launched their new product, iPad in the U.S. market. They are going to launch this product to other countries from July to September. Despite many criticisms, sales of iPad already exceeds 500,000 in the U.S. market. Overall, the future of Apple looks promising. In the following section, Apple's current strategy will be analyzed to find out how efficiently Apple is competing with competitors. II. Organization Structure of Apple Inc.
1. Centralized Characteristic
According to Taehius, a senior product designer of Apple, Inc., Steve Jobs, the CEO of Apple, Inc., holds the most important and centralized role in managing the entire company. Since Jobs put a lot of emphasis on product design, the design department, led by Jonathan Ive, is quite crucial in the company organization shown as a pyramid. (Exhibition a.)This tells us that Apple is a very centralized organization, where all the powers...