This report provides a comprehensive analysis of Apple Inc. (Apple Incorporation California USA), which is an American multinational corporation established in 1976 (1). A PEST Analysis will be conducted on Apple, pointing to the various factors affecting Apple’s growth. To move forward, organizations need to assess their current position in the total marketing environment relative to their competitors. Therefore, the report will undertake a SWOT Analysis in close relation to the above mentioned contemporary constraints, in which the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats will be pointed out. Towards the end, one major contemporary constraint will be highlighted and shown to have the greatest effect on this business. The Company focuses on producing personal computers, portable media players, mobile phones, computer hardware and software (2). Apple employs worldwide 21,600 full time employees and 2,100 temporary employees, in addition the Companies net sales for the fiscal year ending September 29, 2007 amount to $24,006 million (2). Apple is situated in the private sector and offers a range of personal computing products with its three main pillars: Apple Macintosh computers, iPod portable music players, and the newly manufactured iPhone. The Company sells its products in 197 of its own retail stores, through its direct sales force, and its personal online stores (2). Und natürlich über andere retail stores und online shops In short:
The Company is committed to bringing the best personal computing, portable digital music and mobile communication experience to students, educators, creative professionals, businesses, government agencies, and consumers through its innovative hardware, software, peripherals, services, and Internet offerings (2).
Apple is currently facing various legal proceedings and claims that have arisen in the ordinary course of business (2). The European Commission launched an investigation into Apple, last April (2007) because Apple had subsequently charged British iTunes customers 79 pence for a song, whereas European customers only paid 99 cents (74 pence). The case carried on into the year 2008 and Apple finally indicated its intention to make price changes within six months, which will match the already standardized pricing on iTunes across Europe. As a result the European Commission dropped its investigation against Apple which if found guilty, would have been fined up to 10% of its annual worldwide turnover by the European Commission (4). Another interesting political and legal case happened in Norway in 2006, in which the Norwegian Consumer Council launched a complaint against Apple to drop its DRM scheme on iTunes. Up to now, songs which are bought on iTunes can only be transferred to an Apple iPod product and no other mp3 player. Also, the songs can only be copied to an Audio CD and not to an mp3 CD. On April 2nd, 2007, Apple set up a firm jointly with EMI. However, Apple still needs to meet the demands on the September 2007 deadline, which calls upon supplementary measures to certify that iTunes is legally operating and complying with Norwegian law, otherwise a lawsuit or a termination of production in Norway will follow (6). An accurate definition of Digital rights management can be found on the BBC News webpage which states that, “Digital rights management (DRM) is a class of technologies that allow rights owners (copyright-holding companies) to set and enforce terms by which people use their intellectual property” (5).
The key trend in the economic sector is the development of newly emerging markets such as China, Japan, and Asia which play a part in a period of increasing global growth (7). The inevitable issue of market saturation in the European cellular phone market will lead to stagnation within the next 3 years, according to Arthur D. Little, a consultancy, and the French brokerage house Exane BNP Paribas (8). Since Europe is currently...