Apple Current Situation

3761 Words Dec 17th, 2008 16 Pages
Background

Apple Computer Inc. is an American multinational corporation focused on designing and manufacturing personal computers, closely related software products, and other consumer electronic products such as MP3 players. Since its foundation in 1976, Apple has been a pioneer in innovation with multiple ups and downs. In 1976, Apple introduced what was to become the first highly successful mass-produced personal computer. Traditionally, Apple has done extremely well at being the first company to introduce a new product or concept but has struggled to maintain its market share in that product line. Recently, Apple has undergone a transformation from an innovative computer manufacturer to a state of-the-art consumer
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Dell, the industry leader in PC sales holds a 30.7 percent market share. Hewlett-Packard holds 19.1 percent market share, followed by Gateway with 6 percent, Lenovo/IBM with 4.2 percent and Apple Computer with 4.2 percent. A competitive strength assessment for the five main players was conducted evaluating their performance on some of the key success factors such as: innovation, pricing, reputation, quality, distribution, customization, brand’s image, synchronization, and overall quality (Appendix 1). The highest unweighted average score was obtained by Dell with a 9.22 score. The lowest unweighted average scores were obtained by Apple and Gateway with a 7.88 rating and Lenovo/IBM with a 7.77 rating. The difference between the highest and lowest rating is only 1.45 which indicates how intensive competition can be. Dell portrays itself to be a low-cost provider through supply chain and distribution logistics. The company also has a strong reputation for providing the option to customize a computer based on personal needs before buying it. Out of the five main players in the PC industry, Gateway was the only one to report net losses during fiscal year 2004. To be able to compete on a price basis Gateway acquired eMachines, a company that had a cost structure similar to Dell’s. Apple and Hewlett-Packard have a very good synchronization between their personal computers and other consumer electronic products. Apple appears to be the most