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Growth Strategies Case Study

Case Title:

APPLE Computer: From class to mass ?

Publication Year : 2010

Authors: A Datta

Industry: Engineering, Electrical and Electronics

Region: USA

Case Code: GRS0197IRC

Teaching Note: Not Available

Structured Assignment: Not Available


Apple Computers, despite being credited with pioneering the personal computer (PC) revolution by introducing products ahead of its time, never really succeeded in dominating the market. The computer industry got de-verticalised from the late 1980s and early 1990s (with Windows from Microsoft and processors from Intel) making PC's an affordable commodity with open standards. Apple rejected this trend and continued to promote its Mac OS (operating system), and closed architecture. While Microsoft, with Windows, became the biggest success story in the late 20th century, Apple never gained a strong foothold in the PC industry. From the early 1990s Apple's market share fell from 20% to 5%. By the end of 2004 it was only 3%. In order to promote its brand, Apple entered consumer electronics, and introduced its own line of retail stores. iPod, the company's digital music player, boasted an 87.3% market share among hard drive-based music players and boosted the Apple brand. This case explores the significance of technological innovations from a strategic perspective. The rapid pace of technological innovations in the computer industry has shortened the life span of strategies, from decades to months. In light of this fact the case also provokes debate on the innovator's advantage in business leadership. While in some cases innovators do rule the market, such as Intel in microprocessors, and SAP in ERP (enterprise resource planning) packages.

Pedagogical Objectives:

Keywords : Apple Computer; Mac; Wintel; Microsoft; Windows; iPod; iTunes; Mac Mini; iMac; Retail store; Apple store

Contents : 
Pre- Wintel Era
Rise Of Wintel
Apple Computers: Brief History
Apple Stores
Ipod Shuffle And Collaboration With Motorola

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