In 2010, Apple Inc. faced competition from Microsoft and companies using the Windows Operating System (Tony 12). This competition was majorly from companies such as Asus, Toshiba, MSI, and Acer. These companies manufactured personal computers and laptops and were popular among individuals. In that year, Asus launched a series of new 10.1-inch display notebooks with up to 15% turbo boost and thirteen and a half hours battery life (Joel 7). In 2010, MSI released a series of computers with improved processing speeds, rich graphics, minimal noise and energy savers without compromise on the efficiency of the machines. Toshiba released Qosmio, a gaming machine in that year alongside other models of laptops and desktops. These had improvements in the processing speed, cooling and battery life. Acer settled for the aspire series releasing mini notebooks in the market that had average specifications for a normal user and were affordable in price. In 2010, Apple announced plans to make a tablet known as an iPad (Jay 47). In that same year, Apple Inc. market capitalization exceeded that of its longtime competitor and rival Microsoft after a very long time (since 1989). In the mobile phone arena, the company’s brand iPhone faced competition from giant mobile phone manufacturers such as Samsung and Nokia that were running on the newly introduced Android OS and Symbian OS respectively. Samsung also had handsets that were running on a Windows mobile platform (Tony 31).
Apple Inc. has strengths that give it an advantaged edge. For instance, the company enjoys a deep-rooted customer loyalty. The majority of Apple brand customers come to buy back future products from Apple or give referrals to family and friends (Jay 61). The company enjoys strong financial performance and most of its operations are financed. Apple brands are known the world over. This is because the brands have a good reputation and are known to be sleek and elegant by the customers. In addition, the marketing and advertisement campaigns adopted by Apple Inc. are appealing to most of its users. The weaknesses of the company include a declining market share. The company is losing a great market share to entrant and competitor Android by Google and Google brands such as Nexus. Apple products are highly-priced and most individuals can not afford them. The devices by Apple are incompatible with other platforms such as Windows and Linux and other devices generally. The company enjoys opportunities from the new and expanding markets of tablets and smartphones. In addition, acquisitions enable Apple Inc. obtain patents. The company also receives damages from patent infringement by other companies such as rival Samsung. Apple Inc. is threatened by rapid changes in technology. On a daily basis, new companies are releasing products after next that have incorporated new technologies making the older technologies obsolete at a very fast rate. Samsung also puts a lot of pressure on Apple Inc. in terms of pricing of commodities such as smartphones and tablets. Samsung continues to flood the market with new brands at lower prices. The growth of Android OS for mobile, tablet and PC’s is a great threat to Apple Inc.’s Mac OS. This is because Android is gaining popularity among most users due to its interactive user interface and open-source nature of the OS.
Apple Inc. employs a strict top-down management style where all employees are valued and chosen on their work expertise rather than experience (Scott 92). This generally ensures efficiency and close to perfect result output from every employee. Steve Jobs oversaw all decisions in the company from designs to the lunch of new products ensuring he gave them his personalized touch (Scott 97). In all projects, Steve Jobs ensured a directly responsible individual was appointed. This management style at Apple Inc. ensured maximum efficiency in all projects and that all goals of the company were realized.
In 2010, Apple Inc. performed better than its rival Microsoft (Jay 71). The year was characterized by impressive financial results. For example, in its third-quarter results, the company registered $3.25 billion worth of profits and record revenue of $15.7 billion, compared to $1.83 and $ 9.73 billion, respectively, in the previous year (Apple Inc.). In this year, due to their cutting edge, Apple’s performance also surpassed many competitor companies in sales of computers and handsets including Nokia, Dell, and HP.
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