Apple Inc. maintains its head office in Cupertino, California. During the inception of its first product called the Apple I, the handmade computer kit was created by then Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak. The first Apple I did not have a graphic user interface (GUI) so the buyers are required to provide their own keyboard and display. It was Steve Jobs, the co-founder of Apple was responsible for convincing Wozniak to sell Apple I to the market. Apple I was first presented to the public in 1976 and was sold for $666.66 (Daniels Fund Ethics Initiative, “Apple Inc.’s Ethical Success and Challenges”). The product was a hit in the market which persuaded the founders to create more innovative products. Although Apple Computer Inc. achieved $1 million in sales in their first launch, the succeeding years were not as successful. During the mid-1980s, the company experienced difficult times when it launched Apple Lisa for $10,000 in1983. Unfortunately, the product did not sell and Steve Jobs was terminated in 1985 due to internal conflicts with the CEO. Other products that came after called the Mac I and Newton flopped in the market, together with the price drop of the company shares of stock in the market. The company struggled in the coming years, with the return of Steve in 1997. Jobs was re-hired by the company in 1997and he worked his way to introduce a new line of Apple products (Daniels Fund Ethics Initiative, “Apple Inc.’s Ethical Success and Challenges”).
It was during the management of Jobs that major changes were implemented including the corporate culture of Apple. The change that the people recognized is that Jobs allowed the employees to express their views and opinions about Apple projects. He also implemented a “closed door” policy. The company makes sure that it is vigilant in protecting the technology of their products and to ascertain that the product information is contained. Jobs instituted changes in the operation by maintaining a flat organizational structure than to have layers of management to directly address employees’ concerns. Apple added new line of products that prevailed in the electronics industry but had to undergo several challenges throughout its history in the computer business (Daniels Fund Ethics Initiative, “Apple Inc.’s Ethical Success and Challenges”). When Steve Jobs returned to Apple in 1997, the price of the shares initially started at $3.30 per stock. The price of shares in 2011 climbed to $339.87 over past years. The last four years proved to be an accomplishment for Apple for landing the first place in the World’s Most Admired Companies of Fortune Magazine. The consumers of Apple products are guaranteed that the products are of high quality, state of the art and innovative. Presently, the Apple brand is assessed to cost more than $153 billion to make it as the most valuable global brand. Many competitors tried to imitate the company’s business model but all of them failed to penetrate technology offered by Apple (Daniels Fund Ethics Initiative, “Apple Inc.’s Ethical Success and Challenges”). Some of the key products being offered by Apple include Pro line laptops or the MacBook Pro, Mac Pro desktops, MacBook Air consumer laptops and desktops, servers, Apple TV, iPad, iPod, I Touch, Mac OS X Server operating systems among others. The success of the company was derived from a combination of factors, such as good leadership skills of its CEO Steve Jobs, highly-innovative products and corporate culture which made Apple the first company to transform technology to a worldwide success.
Based on the report of Dillet, Apple Inc. has $137.1 billion in cash in the first quarter of 2013, or an increase of 12.9 percent from its previous cash position during the fourth quarter of 2012 which was reported to be $121.3 billion. Compared to its other competitors such as HP, Apple became the first in the retail technology to earn such income for only one quarter. It is comparable to the annual income of HP and surpassed the cash position of the country Vietnam, which only has $123.6 billion. It is clearly shown that Apple continues to dominate the cash position as opposed to other competitors (Dillet, “Apple Now Has $137.1 Billion in Cash”). The CIA World Factbook revealed that if Apple was to be considered as one of the countries in the world, it is considered as the country with the 25th largest economy in the universe. The market value of Apple falls between the rich country Iran with $480 billion in gross domestic product (GDP) and Taiwan, which is considered the tech powerhouse in the world having $505 billion in GDP (Gosh, “Apple: If Market Cap Were GDP”).
In 1946, Sony Corp. was first established in Nihonbashi, Tokyo, Japan. Its original name was Tokyo Tsushin Kogyo K.K. or in English translation, Tokyo Telecommunications Engineering Corporation. It was more popularly known as Totsuko, in Nihonbashi, Tokyo with a start-up capital of 190,000 yen that will be used for research and manufacture of telecommunications equipment. In 1951, the first product that Sony launched was a magnetite-coated, paper-based recording tape that they called the “Soni-Tape”. In 1958, the company was renamed to Sony Corporation. In 1961, the company produced its all-transistor amp tape recorder called the “TC-777” (Sony.net). The company led the initial Japanese company that offered shares of stock in America in the form of American Depositary Receipts or ADRs on the OTC market of the New York Stock Exchange. In 2001, the company established Sony Ericsson Mobile Communications and absorbed AIWA in 2001. In 2010, the company opened the Sony Pictures Studies in California and named it as “Sony 3D Technology” (Soney.net).
Sony announced that its global GDP forecast of the company is that it will increase by 3.5% per year and within the 2013 calendar year 2013. However, the 2012 report of Taiwan Times revealed that with Japan’s GDP falling by 0.9 percent due to the decline in capital expenditure, one of its leading companies, Sony Corp minimized its spending plans to overcome its big losses with the continued struggle with other sustained markets and strong yen. Sony’s GDP is expected to rise from its global average by its forecast of electronics sales in 2013 which will grow significantly among the BRIC markets composed of Brazil, Russia, India and China. This will mean that Sony’s GDP will grow to above 20% of GDP in the next three years (Sony.net).
Based on the figures presented by Apple and Sony, it can be concluded that Apple has a more stable GDP since it has millions of consumers worldwide who continue to patronize Apple products. On the other hand, Sony still has to recuperate from Japan’s losses and does not appear to have a stable GDP. Although Sony continues to strive for a better economy within the latter part of 2013 despite the looming recession (Taipei Times, “Japanese Quarterly GDP Shrinks 3.5%”).
The term globalization is associated with processes which can be associated to the efforts of one who shall be enthusiastic to accept the migratory ﬂows and technological inventions in order to enhance and extend social connections by combining time and space (Campbell, MacKinnon and Stevens 9). Such perspective has been adopted by some scholars, who regard globalization to be closely associated to humanity, since it is vital to recognize the fact that globalization processes are continuously evolving and goes along a historical background. It is noteworthy to mention that the increasing social awareness of processes has a direct link with globalization which started to emerge with the birth of industrial capitalism as early as the 20th century writers including Karl Marx, Henry Adams, and John Dewey who have mentioned that distance, space, time, and communication are the factors that can transform new technologies (Campbell, et al. 9).
Globalization is likewise affected by politics since it is most commonly related with the state or the government. In effect, politics can is directly connected to the processes by which certain groups of people derive decisions. Politics involves social relations and the decision-making process which take into consideration authority and power. Most of the decisions made by countries all over the world had been influenced by politics including the application and manner of enforcing the decision. Thus, politics become a part of group interactions including the governments, corporations, clubs and other academic institutions (Campbell et al. 9). On the other hand, some political scientists draw their analysis and research on the basis of other “governmental positions such as political behavior and organization, systems of governance, public policy, and the acquisition, allocation, application, and transfer of power” (Campbell et al. 9).
In the case of the United States, it remains to be the leading superpower with its capability forecast the products, images, ideas, and values in a global perspective. In addition, several nations have transformed to a democratic type of government where it opened the countries to be influenced by other social factors. These social factors include technological innovations, such as computer networks and ﬁber optic cables in increased the speed (Campbell at al. 10). As a result, these modern products and ideologies have started a global epidemic with the participation of firms, private institutions, company values, and ideas that that spread globally due to faster networks such as the American and Western multinational corporations, such Apple Inc. Apple was able to spread not only their innovative products, but also the corporate values which makes transaction processes flow with speed and easy to use by giving them a life that is more comfortable and updated to the changing times. Although there are some critics who regarded such trend as American or Western cultural imperialism which means that they control the cultural space and that imposes a dominant culture using coercive or indirect means (Campbell et al. 10).
In the case of Apple Inc., the announcement of Steve Jobs in 2007 that the company changed its name to Apple Inc., from Apple Computer, Inc. symbolized that the company is no longer a computer manufacturer but will offer consumer electronics to the public. This was a breakaway from the manufacturing of computers alone toward building a network that will sell consumer electronics to loyal Apple users by coming out with a new gadgets such as the Apple TV, iPods, iTunes, iPhones, and iPads (Daniels Fund Ethics Initiative, “Apple Inc.’s Ethical Success and Challenges”). Apple continued to reinvent computers at the option of the consumers when they presented the tablet computers such as the iPad. With this along, the company started to take the market share from other top competitors in the computer industry (Daniels Fund Ethics Initiative, “Apple Inc.’s Ethical Success and Challenges”). The effect of the Apple products was felt when the sales of desktops, laptops, and net books started to decline when Apple launched their tablet computers and until today, the tablet computers continue to dominate the market.
In terms of globalization, Apple Inc. Has made a distinctive mark in the sense that it has created its own corporate culture and shared it with the world. The transition of Apple from a computer to a consumer electronics company was the first of its kind and difficult to imitate. Aside from this, the leadership of Steve Jobs as the CEO of Apple is unprecedented by connecting with his employees and by maintaining a strong corporate culture in the business. Some perceive that the concept of evangelism is an important component of Apple’s culture (Daniels Fund Ethics Initiative, “Apple Inc.’s Ethical Success and Challenges”). In fact, the corporate evangelists represent the individuals who are able to promote their products in a way that it will reach all sectors of society. Reports revealed that the company engaged the services of a chief evangelist who was tasked to spread the message about the company and its vision and to earn the public’s support for its products. The corporate culture that is practiced by Apple takes the role of an evangelist in the sense that evangelists have deep faith in the company and propagate this faith by convincing others and who are also expected to convert more users.
This manifests that the evangelists are not only employed by Apple, but they become part of their loyal customers because they use the product and use the word of mouth to sway other people to purchase these products. This convincing power of the evangelist can be considered as a “Mac cult”, in order to keep the number of loyal Apple customers to spread a positive message about Apple products to their close friends and relatives (Daniels Fund Ethics Initiative, “Apple Inc.’s Ethical Success and Challenges”). This culture was developed through successful evangelism which can only be expected of happy and contented employees who strongly believe in the company that they will vouch their own credibility to promote Apple products. There are two cultural changes that were initiated by Jobs: First, he encouraged debate on ideas, and secondly, he created a vision that employees could believe in (Daniels Fund Ethics Initiative, “Apple Inc.’s Ethical Success and Challenges”). The implementation of these two changes enabled the employees to feel that they were a part of the family and that their opinion mattered to the company. This culture established a sense of loyalty among Apple’s employees and their loyal patrons. The company is proud to implement such exceptional corporate culture because it gave the company its continued success for several years (Daniels Fund Ethics Initiative, “Apple Inc.’s Ethical Success and Challenges”).
Apple is the best company to represent globalization since was instrumental to keep United States to its position as one of the leading superpower country with its capability forecast the products, images, ideas, and values in a global perspective (Campbell at al. 9). The status of the U.S. in the world economy is a strong influence among other countries that shifted to a democratic type of government by taking into account vital other social factors. These social factors include technological innovations, such as computer networks and ﬁber-optic cables in increased the speed and technology, such in the case of Apple. Apple was able to spread not only their innovative products, but also the corporate values which makes transaction processes flow with speed and easy to use by giving them a life that is more comfortable and updated to the changing times. (Campbell at al. 10). As a result, these modern products and ideologies have started a global epidemic with the participation of firms, private institutions, company values, and ideas that that spread globally due to faster networks such as the American and Western multinational corporations,
Compared to other companies, Apple was able to maintain its ethical standards and guaranteed that its employees and their partners who work with them will carry out the ethical standards set by the company at all times. Apple’s success can be attributed to its vision to create innovative, high-quality products that use the state of the art technology and services. Such corporate culture of Apple has placed it at the supreme advantage over its competitors. This manifests the company’s integrity and dedication to come up with the best line of products in the market today. Apple follows five principles which are: honesty, integrity, respect, confidentiality, and compliance (Daniels Fund Ethics Initiative, “Apple Inc.’s Ethical Success and Challenges”). Armed with these principles, Apple was able to mark its way as the 25th country in the globe even surpassing the GDP of Iran, which is one of the richest countries in the world. Apple adopted its own code of business conduct that will supervise its operations locally and overseas. The creation of policies on corporate governance and regulations for reporting became its guidelines to achieve global success (Daniels Fund Ethics Initiative, “Apple Inc.’s Ethical Success and Challenges”).
The users of Apple products are guaranteed that they get money’s worth for high quality and innovative products. Currently, the Apple brand is assessed to cost more than $153 billion to make it as the most valuable global brand. Although several competitors tried to copy its business model, they were not able to persuade loyal Apple customers to shift to other products (Daniels Fund Ethics Initiative, “Apple Inc.’s Ethical Success and Challenges”). It is foreseen that the leading Apple products will continue to survive even in the coming decades by maintaining its ethical standards and to keep their employees and partners committed at all times to work together with their company’s vision. Sony’s failure to achieve this kind of success was influences by globalization and other social forces.
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