SWOT Analysis: Apple Inc.
Management 303 SWOT Analysis of Apple Inc
Section I – Organizational History and overview
In 2007, Jobs told a crowd at the Macworld Expo that Apple would now be known as Apple Inc., and not Apple Computer, Inc. The company had moved from producing only computers to offering the iPod, iTunes and more. That year, Apple also debuted its widely successful touch screen Smartphone and the less popular Apple TV. In early 2009, Jobs left Apple for a short time to undergo a liver transplant. He returned later in the year. In 2010, Apple launched the iPad, a 10-inch touch screen tablet. At the beginning of 2011, Jobs announced he would again be taking leave for medical reasons. Chief Operating Officer Tim Cook once again steps up in his place. In April 2011, Apple celebrated its 35th year of business. According to Mashable, the corporation has a market capitalization of more than $317 billion and is the most successful technology company worldwide. Given Apple's mass popularity with its computers, mobile phones and portable media players; it may seem hard to believe it has not always been a smooth road. The history of Apple reveals plenty of wins, but also a few rough spots.
Section II – Strengths and Weaknesses
Apple’s strength and weaknesses are internal factors that they can control and mold.
Strong Brand Name
Millward Brown Optimor rated Apple the 3rd most valuable global brand in their 2010 top 100 list of most valuable global brands and estimates their brand value to be worth $83.2 billion, (2010). Apple’s brand loyalty, often referred to as the “Cult of Apple”, is probably Apple’s greatest asset and due to their intense loyalty their customer base tends to be very forgiving of product problems, (Bulik). Brands aspire to gain this type kind of a loyalty from their customers, as such, this is an obvious strength.
ITunes Music Store is an excellent source of revenue, especially with the iPod and the accessibility on Windows platform. Apple Computer are expert in Developing own software and hardware. Apple’s niche audience provides the company with some lagging from the direct price competition. Also ITunes accounts for 80% of legally downloaded music, artists make more sales through ITunes download than in cd sales. Weaknesses:
Although the IPhone 4G was the highest scoring smart phone they ever tested Consumer Reports does not recommend it due to its problems with its antenna and until Apple corrects it they advise their readers to stick with the 3G, (Smart phones, 2010). At first Apple blamed the way their clients were handling the phone and only later they sent a free rubber “bumper” that corrected the problem. Apple’s reluctance to acknowledge or deal with this and other product defects are a real weakness as they appear to rely upon their customers to overlook these issues.
As a reaction to a perceived threat from Google, Apple recently loosened overly stringent restrictions for developers that sought to develop applications for the IPhone and now allows them to use a wider variety of computer languages with Apple’s operating system iOS, (Driver & Valdes, 2010). As Apple makes 30% off of every application sold, their overly protective nature regarding compatibility issues, and their failure to respond to concerns in a timely enough fashion, are a weakness that have caused them to lose business partnerships and revenue in this and countless other instances.
Section II Opportunities and Threats
These are external factors that affect business in a good and bad ways, it is up to the company to react to and turn these opportunities and threats in their favor.
Apple’s corporate culture seems unlikely to consider a merger, however it has recently acquired other companies, and as they are relatively new to the consumer electronics industry and...
References: Bulik, B.S. (2010, October 18). Marketer of the year 2010, Marketer of the Decade: Apple. Advertising Age. Retrieved from http://adage.com/moy2010/article?article_id=146492
Manning, H., Temkin, B., Bodine, K, Dorsey, M., & Geller, S. (2007, September 12). Topic overview: customer experience. Forrester Research. Retrieved from
Schept, K. (2010). BrandZ top 100 most valuable global brands 2010. Millward Brown Optimor. Retrieved from http://c1547732.cdn.cloudfiles.rackspacecloud.com/BrandZ_Top100_2010.pdf
Srivastava, R.K. & Thomas, G.M. (2010, June). Managing brand performance: aligning positioning, execution and experience. Journal of Brand Management, 17(7), 465-471. Retrieved from EBSCOhost Business Source Complete.
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