2. Identify your firm’s main objectives and their strategic activities for meeting those objectives.
Apple through its innovative hardware, software, peripherals, and services aims to be a continued leader at bringing the best user experience to its customers. With its unique ability of designing and developing its own operating systems, hardware, application software, and services, Apple provides its customers with new products and solutions with ease-of-use, seamless integration, and innovative design. The Company has various products like the iPhone, iPad, Mac, Apple TV, and Operating systems like iOS and Mac OS X. Apple, through its iTunes store, has broadened its platform and delivery of third-party digital content and applications. The Company also supports various software development communities that develop software applications complementing its offerings. The Company’s strategy also includes expanding its distribution network to effectively reach more customers and provide them with a high-quality sale and post-sale support experience. The Company manages its businesses on a geographical basis addressing its customers across the world. Apple differentiates itself with knowledgeable sales persons in stores at high traffic locations and shopping malls across the US and world. These employees with their experience and knowledge provide product advice, service and training to customers. The Apple stores offer various third party hardware, software and accessories that complement its products. The Company places emphasis on effective integration of technology into classroom instruction with the goal of increasing student achievement. This requires addressing the needs of education customers with a range of targeted products and services. The Company also sells its hardware and software products to enterprise and government customers in various geographic locations.
3. Present an industry analysis for your firm’s industry. (Only Mobile Division of Apple)
i. Industry competition – Very High
A fiercely competitive environment characterized by frequent introduction of products, changes to existing products and rapid technological advances. Firms mimic newly introduced products/features by competitors to stay afloat in the market. The competitors are aggressive with price cuts in order to lower their profit margins and increase market share. For example, Android almost doubled its market share in 2011 with its diverse spectrum of devices which ranged from inexpensive, well under $100, to high-end LTE devices. Established distribution networks of certain companies lower their costs and enable them to reach more customers. Firms compete to retain and recruit the best talent in the industry. Apple, RIM, Samsung, HTC, Motorola and Nokia are major players for hardware. iOS, Android, Windows and Nokia’s OS are major players for operating systems.
ii. Bargaining power of buyers – Moderate to Low
Electronics are expensive and have become a necessity in business, education, and even social lives. Lifecycles of products are also short. These trends spur consumer spending and keep the power of buyers low. Buyers are willing to pay more for the Apple brand, reputation, image, and quality. Firms like Apple wrest control of supply chain all the way down to the level of the buyer. This also allows these firms to exert some leverage on wholesalers and distributors.
iii. Bargaining power of suppliers – Moderate to High
Firms have many custom parts for which there are very few suppliers making supplier power stronger. For the mobile components that are supplied to different firms, there is competition among these firms (consumers) to get the supplies within a specific timeline to meet the market demand. General components are vulnerable to industry wide shortages.
iv. Threat of substitution – Very High
The threat of substitution is higher with existing firms’ ability to mimic newly introduced...
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