Apple Computer: Research how Apple managed to reinvent itself over the years.

1. What were some of Apple’s biggest successes and failures?  Describe why.
2. How much of Apple’s success can be linked directly back to its culture?  Why?
3. How do the actions of Apple apply to the TCOs?

Apple has been in the USA and world marketplace since 1975 and today it is one of the leaders in technology market in the USA and in the world. Some even say “ Apple is mostly Steven Jobs life rather than a company’s history “
During Apple’s history almost most of the time Steven Jobs name is associated with turning points for Apple. For example in the very beginning Jobs and Wozniak created Apple I in 1975 and the sales was pretty much fine. Then Apple II was designed in 1977 and just a within a year the company made $3 million.  This is showing that Apple since the very beginning has always been working in creating and inventing new things.
However Apple was not always big success, same years later Apple created pricey Lisa, which obviously was not a success and finally it came out of the market in 1980 thus Apple lost the market to IBM by 50%.
Apple was optimistic and continued inventing new products and in 1984 Apple Macintosh was put into the market with a price of $2500. It was too expensive and the sales were really poor. The next computer‘s price went to $9,950 and it was again sold poorly.
In 1985 since the company had gone to public and the decisions were made by Board of Directors and Apple was having losses, John Scully the CEO fired Steven Jobs.
In 1996 Apple was struggling and in 1997 quarterly loss was $708 million. Jobs became then the CEO of Apple.
Jobs started to work on improving the quality and PC became faster than Pentium G3 power processor. IMac inexpensive desktop was another hit for the company. In 1998 the sales was 5.9 billion dollars.
Apple continued its reinvention process and finally invented Iphone that is sold successfully till today.
So Apple has always been innovative and has success since it was able to understand what the consumers want even before they know what they want.
Apple also was able to build the brand; nowadays everyone can recognize the Apple’s Logo everywhere in the world.
The following products could be considered success for Apple
·         Ipod is one of the Apple’s biggest success , it has completely changed the music industry and we can even say it has done a revolution in the technology innovation.
·         Iphone  is the biggest success in my opinion since it is affordable, very popular and useful for everyone compare to other products Apple released. Created January 2007.
·         The Apple II
·          iPod
·         iTunes
My personal opinion is that Apple had success due to having as a policy the following  
·         Creative thinking
·         Always innovations
·         Secrecy (e.g. one designer group would not know on what projects other were working)
·         Good marketing efforts
It seems to me that Apple has been able to keep the “audience” always excited about new products and new releases and most of the time Apple has met the expectations.
However, Apple had it failures as well, which were results of many factors, my personal opinion is that Apple’s failures were the result of Steven Jobs wanting to amaze the world with its innovative products and thus those products were really amazing  however they would not always fit for business and especially personal use pricewise. I do not think someone ever didn’t think about buying an Apple III, because of its great features etc, however things have to affordable. Even today not everyone can buy an Iphone because of its price but everyone wants to try that amazing phone. In conclusion the failures of Apple have been due to following
·         Pricey Products
·         Poor marketing efforts
·         Too ambitious products
Some of the Apple products which were not sold poorly
·         No 1 - Apple Newton
·         No 2 - Apple Lisa
·         No 3 - Macintosh Portable
·         No 4 - Macintosh TV
·         No 5 - Motorola ROKR
·         No 6 - 20th Anniversary Macintosh
·         No 7 - Apple Pippin
·         No 8 - Apple EWorld
·         No 9 – Taligent
·         No 10 - Apple Cyberdog
The Innovation usually comes from the top management. The long term innovation pursuers provide that the whole company is inclined to support innovation. The innovators always have to watch the marketing, they must be in the market with the consumer and try to understand their needs and expectations and finally listen to them.
Apple has been following the above mentioned principles, which along with top secrecy leaded Apple to success. Apple’s office culture has always been different from other companies and in particular companies in Silicon Valley which sometimes are presented as touchy-feely.
As per Don Reisinger’s article “Apple's Corporate Culture: 10 Lessons for Staying in Steve Jobs' Good Graces”  (2010-08-10)One of the managers who was asked to go presented Apple’s corporate culture as follows http://www.eweek.com/c/a/IT-Infrastructure/Apples-Corporate-Culture-10-Lessons-for-Staying-in-Steve-Jobs-Good-Graces-825505/
·         Focus on design 
·         Believe in Jobs Steven
·         Forget everything that came before it 
·         Believe Apple is better than all others 
In an article in CBS-BNET by Chris Morrison | August 10, 2009 “Four Principles of Apple’s Successes (and Failures) some principles of Apple are presented as follows
·         Principle One: Don’t Follow Your Customers; Lead Them
·         Principle Two: Temper Engineering With Art
·         Principle Three: Focus on the Few to Sell to the Many
·         Principle Four: Be Your Own Toughest Critic
We could state that Apple is TCO oriented, meaning that during the product life cycle Apple thinks about the Service and Quality , which overall impacts on the TCO. There always have been fights between Apple and Microsoft etc, here is a very good example in an Article “TCO: New research finds Macs in the enterprise easier, cheaper to manage than Windows PCs” on ZDNet  By David Morgenstern | March 17, 2010http://www.zdnet.com/blog/apple/tco-new-research-finds-macs-in-the-enterprise-easier-cheaper-to-manage-than-windows-pcs/6294
The Article shows a survey that shows despite Apple high price the TCO turns out to be less than Microsoft’s one.
Presently Apple is prospering and works on customer satisfaction direction, since today’s consumers are more education and technologically aware they see Apple as a reliable “partner” with reliable products. Apple constantly puts out new updates to the softwares, fixes bugs, and closes holes that make it harder to get.  Also, big thing is Apple uses Intel chips which allow costumer to natively run Windows Software and Mac Os, so one can get two computers for the price of one.  Another thing is Apple products retain most of their value. All of Apple Macs currently use Intel chips but the second point is that one can sell his/her 2007 Macbook pro for only a couple hundred dollars less than one bought it. All Apple products retain their value amazingly well, so people can turn around and sell it later for next to what one bought it for.
As one of the Apple’s Loyal customer put it, “Find me any pc computer you can do that with, so that justifies TCO as well, if I know I can make most of the money back when I sell it, I can justify owning it.”
Almost all Apple’s Macs are expandable. Customers have the option of increasing ram and hard drive space. Since mostly the ram is the big thing, it’s easily accessible in most of the computers.  And the fact that a new OS comes out and Apple’s consumers’ existing computers will all be able to be updated to it makes it worth it and it’s easy to upgrade.
 In the future Apple is going to maintain its place in the marketplace with all the achievements they have had so far and will try to concentrate on Smart phones. This is my personal opinion and fantasy perhaps but a result we might have an Iphone that will allow the other party’s 3d picture come out of the phone while talking.