Apple, Inc Strategic Audit

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Introduction

Apple Inc. is a company that focuses on development and marketing of personal computers, media devices, design, and portable digital music players. Also, the company sells a variety of related software, services, peripherals, networking solutions, and third-party digital content and applications. The company's portfolio of offerings comprises Mac computing systems, iPods line of portable digital music and video players, iPhone handsets and iPad portable multimedia and computing devices (8). Apple was the first to use a 3.5 disk and first graphic based interface to be sold to customers. This strategic audit of Apple analyses the company’s strategy formulation, implementation, and evaluation. To determine that research had to be done on the external and internal factors, financial ratios, and long-term objectives. Based on this information strategic alternatives and strategic advice is given to conclude this strategic audit. History

In 1977, Apple Computer Inc. was incorporated. Steven Wozniak and Steven P. Jobs co-founded the company. They introduced the first Apple I computer in 1976, but it was a failure. Apple II was successful in 1980. Apple produced the first mouse 4 years later. By the 1990s, Apple lost about $68 million due to competition with Microsoft (8). Steve Jobs returned to the company and made an agreement with Microsoft and developed software called PowerSchool. In the following year, Apple, Ericsson and Sun Microsystems formed an alliance to create a standard format for delivering multimedia content to wireless devices, such as smartphones. The alliance combined the knowledge of cellphones and Apple’s QuickTime video software . In 2003, iTunes (an online store for downloading music, TV shows, and movies) was launched. In the same year, Apple introduced its fourth generation iPod portable digital music player. Apple changed its name from Apple Computer Inc. to just Apple Inc. in 2007, to establish the fact of branching out to new ideas. The product line has grown dramatically from the 1970s. The product line consists of: * Mac Hardware Products

* iTunes
* iPhone
* iPad/iPod
* Software products and computer technologies, and internet software and services. In January 2010, Apple announced iPad, a high-resolution, Multi-Touch display device for browsing the web, reading, sending email, and viewing entertainment content. Apple announced the new iPod touch in September 2010, with new features including video calling, and HD video recording. In the same month, Apple introduced iTunes 10, a new music-oriented social network. Also, Apple announced the new Apple TV which allows viewers to watch HD movies and TV shows. In March 2011, Apple introduced the latest version of its mobile operating system, with faster Safari mobile browsing performance and sharing an iPhone 4 cellular data connection over Wi-Fi. Apple’s stock symbol on the NASDAQ is AAPL. The SIC code is 3571 and the NAICS code is 334111 (9). Also, the current stock price for Apple Inc. is $545.18.

Current Organizational Challenge
Apple Inc. current organizational challenges include the death of CEO Steve Jobs, competitors, and removing toxic chemicals. Steve Jobs is responsible for turning the company to what is today. Unfortunately, with his death the company lost a leader and a creative visionary. Therefore, Apple must continue his strategy and create new ideas before anyone else, with an eye always on the vision of the future. Apple is winning the battle between them and their competitors, but competitors will always be a challenge in a business. Especially, with Jobs gone competitors fell there is an opportunity for competitors to create new ideas. Also, “Apple has been criticized by some environmental organizations for not being a leader in removing toxic chemicals from its new products, and for not aggressively or properly recycling its old products” (2).

Apple is known as the “innovative” of the technology...
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