Design Thinking and Innovation at Apple

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Apple Case Assignment

Abstract The purpose of this assignment is to access the “Apple way” and understand the source of their systematic innovation and the way to sustain it. The major source of innovation is design thinking, which is also discussed based on Apple case. Finally, Steve Jobs is compared to other major industry player, Bill Gates, in order to understand their major difference and compare their success stories.

Is there a systematic approach to Innovation at Apple? How would you characterize it? List at least 3 examples from the case. 1.

From the start Apple has been extremely systematic in its approach to innovation. Fine products do not materialize out of thin air; they are a direct result of creative thinking policies and practices. Continuous commitment to improve product design made Apple products more attractive to the consumer. One of Apple’s most important innovation drivers is a policy to put design and interface, “user experience”, above all. Rather than creating a language or operating system and then “overlaying” an interface, Apple started with an intuitive and simple interface, and then designed the operating system to accommodate it. In order to do so, programmers and engineers were forced to think as creative designers. This system forced product design team to be innovative in all areas of development. Apple systematically built retail stores network when common wisdom said that technology companies should abandon retail and move online. As a result, Apple ended up with the best of both worlds: a fashionable space for “hands-on” consumers, including the hip younger generation, and a fully functional online system for the no-nonsense consumer. Apple’s retail outlets have set records for profitability per square foot of retail space, an evident success of “think differently” philosophy. Perhaps the best example of a systematic approach to innovation is in the ongoing evolution of Apple’s flagship products. The modus operandi...
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