Apple is a successful computer, phone, and computer hardware and software producer. The external environment of the business has evolved drastically over the years opening up new opportunities as well as exposing the company to new threats. The company has numerous opportunities and threats which can be exploited and avoided respectively to ensure the company remains competitive and successful.
There are major threats that the company needs to curb in order to realize its mission and serve its stakeholders effectively. The IT software industry has many competitive and innovative companies such as Microsoft. The company faces similar conditions in the hardware division with companies like HP, Dell and Lenovo which are known to produce cheaper and low budget computers. The company also faces stiff competition for its brand of phones, which contribute largely to Apple’s revenue, from mobile phone giants like Nokia and Samsung. The rise of Google Android in the mobile industry has further tightened competition; hence Apple needs to invent ways to survive in the aggressively competitive industry.
Apple products are also relatively more expensive than those of its competitors such as Dell, HP, Microsoft, Google Android and Nokia. This makes the other companies’ products to be more attractive to consumers than Apple’s products. This is a threat to the company’s sales. Furthermore, Apple’s products have been found to be incompatible with other software such as windows hence limiting the usage of these products. This can lead to low sales since consumers and software companies view Apple products to be rigid and incompatible.
The quickly evolving technology environment threatens the company’s identity of creating new products and setting new trends in technology. The company has to improve its technological capacity to keep up the pace with its competitors. The downloading of music online from Apple’s iTunes is likely to decline with the increase of free online music sources. The recession has also had its toll on the company. The sales are likely to drop due to high product and service prices.
There is a host of opportunities that Apple can embrace to enhance its chances of realizing its vision. The company can exploit the constant expansion and growth of the mobile and computer industry. Apple products are of high quality and their demand all over the world is high. The company should also embrace the expanding market of energy efficient and environmentally friendly products. They should start making energy saving computers and smart phones which would be a hit in the technology industry.
Apple’s good relationships with other technology companies, especially software companies, present a good opportunity for joint ventures to develop new products of great quality. This would help foster the company’s reputation as a maker of genuine and quality products, as well as increase revenue. The company also has the opportunity of expanding internationally to meet worldwide demand for its products. Apart from Europe and America, Apples has yet to exploit the African and Asian markets which are very lucrative. The ever increasing demand for online music, as well as new applications such as cloud based services, can be exploited to expand the company’s sources of revenue.
Embracing the available opportunities is important for the growth and improvement of the company’s ability to realize its vision. The external threats facing the company hinder the realization of the company’s mission and must be curbed through technological improvements and strategic planning.
EDGAR Online, Inc. (2011, October 26). Form 10-K Annual Report. Retrieved August 1, 2012, from Apple Inc.: http://investor.apple.com/secfiling.cfm?filingID=1193125-11-282113&CIK=320193
Schneiders, S. (2011). Apple's Secret Of Success - Traditional Marketing Vs. Cult Marketing. New York: Diplomica Verlag.
Sutherland, A. (2012). The Story of Apple (illustrated ed.). New York: The Rosen Publishing Group.