Apple Computer, Inc.
Introduction and Summary:
Apple computer introduced their first computer, the Apple I, in 1976. The company was started by two high school friends, Steve Wozniak and Steve Jobs, when they collaborated to sell Steve Wozniak's invention. The company has survived the booms and the busts of the computer industry through new innovations in both software and hardware that has differentiated itself from its competitors.
Apple's current strategy is to sell its "Mac" products to customers who aren't satisfied with traditional "IBM" compatible personal computers. Apple looks for customers who want a computing alternative that doesn't rely on computers that are run by Microsoft software programs. Apple has targeted educational institutions and businesses that want something different than the standard IBM clone. Apple has focused on selling the low end eMac to schools and the high end PowerMac to the multimedia industry. Apple has segmented its product lines into portable and desktop computers.
Both of these segments are furthermore segmented into upper and lower lines which are reflected in their selling price.
Apple has also created a line of software to accompany its hardware. However, the Apple software and operating systems can only be used on Apple equipment. Apple's operating systems for it's servers is compatible with Windows, Unix, and Linux.
Apple distributes its products through company controlled retail stores, online sales, and though an exclusive "store-in-store" program with CompUSA. Apple has continued to maintain distribution with a few of its traditional regional retailers. Target and Best Buy offer Apple iPods in their stores. Dell also offers iPods for Windows through its website.
Apple has maintained about 5% of the market share in the personal computer market for the past four years. Through the years, Apple has a long history of innovation in the personal computer...