EXECUTIVE SUMMARY 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
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Apple computer began opening storefronts in the United States in effort to compete against the PC based companies. Their thought is that by having it available for the customers some will eventually make the switch away from the PC-based systems. The largest socio-cultural hurdle for companies such as Apple is the lower educational standards of many countries. While many are making great progress, they are limited in number.
Industry Analysis / Porter’s Five Forces Model of Competition Porter's uses the five forces, supplier power, barriers to entry, threat of substitutes, buyer power, and the degree of rivalry, as tools that help analyse a company's position against its competitors (QuickMBA site, 2003). Threat of New Entrants, (low): Start-up costs are extremely high so the probability of new entrants is low. For more details refer to appendix 2 (a).Bargaining Power of Suppliers, (low): The suppliers are plentiful and must compete with others to ensure that they will be able to retain the business of the computer companies. For more details refer to appendix 2 (b).
Bargaining Power of Buyers, (high): All of Apple's customers have a variety of computer companies from which to choose when it comes to purchasing hardware, software, or peripherals. Switching costs are low. For more details refer to appendix 2 (c ).
Threat of Substitute Products (very high): Apple’s operating system differentiation can command