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Apple Computer 2002 Case Solution

Solution Id Length Case Author Case Publisher
2613 1395 Words (5 Pages) David B. Yoffie, Yusi Wang Harvard Business School : 702469
This solution includes: A Word File A Word File

The case study examines the position of Apple Computer in the market. Apple went through major changes in the 1990s, with different CEOs coming in after every few years, each with a different vision. Jobs efforts led to the launch of Apple II which proved to be very and led to the company being the industry leader. Sculley was appointed the CEO in 1985, and during his tenure, the company faced some serious challenges primarily pertaining to the high prices. When Splinder took over as CEO, he focused on lowering the prices for its products. However, he wasn’t successful in doing so, and when Amelio became the CEO the stock price of the company was at an all-time low. Amelio tried to reposition Apple, by charging premium prices for its products but faced operational problems. When Jobs took over the job of CEO, he was led by the same goal with which he started which was an innovation.

Following questions are answered in this case study solution

  1. Historically, what competitive advantages have Apple enjoyed in the PC industry?

  2. How has Apple’s position changed by the early 90’s?

  3. How has Apple responded?

  4. What should John Scully have done in 1992?

Case Analysis for Apple Computer 2002

1. Historically, what competitive advantages have Apple enjoyed in the PC industry?

Apple had a considerable number of competitive advantages since the very beginning. It always emphasized a lot on innovation, and this led to the launch of Apple II. Its launch resulted in an increase in the annual sales of the PC industry to $1 billion and led to Apple being the industry leader. Even when IBM entered the industry, Apple had a competitive advantage as only Apple had access to the designs of its products in contrast to the IMB PC which could be copied by other producers.  

Apple always gave great importance to customer needs, and the production of Macintosh was a proof of that. It was comparatively cheaper and improvements to the Macintosh led to a substantial increase in the sales. At this time Apple was the PC company that yielded the greatest profit in the world. In the late 1990s the launch of the iMac, was a step forward by Jobs. It no longer targeted the niche market only and was initially considered an economical product.

Another competitive advantage that Apple has is the fact that it has complete control over all the elements of its products. As the case study mentions, Apple has been integrated horizontally and vertically to a greater extent. As Apple manages all aspects of production itself this gives the company a lot of control over its production and makes it easier for them to make changes according to the customer demands. This made it easier for Apple to achieve customer satisfaction and gave it an edge over other companies. Various factors played a role in giving Apple a competitive advantage over other companies, ranging from innovation to customer satisfaction and the control it has over its production. All of these factors have helped Apple to standout in the PC industry 

2. How has Apple’s position changed by the early 90’s?

By 1990, Apple had successfully repositioned itself in the market and had around $1 billion in cash. As the company was vertically and horizontally integrated it was able to incorporate a lot of features according to the customer needs. Apple charged its customers for the distinctive features of its Mac, and this led to Apple’s products being seen as overpriced by the customers. Around the same time the prices of IBM clones started to decrease, and this made the Mac look even more expensive to the customers.

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