Apple Inc.’s History and Company Analysis


Apple Inc. may be regarded as one of the leading multinational technology companies which software, electronics, and online services are used by millions of consumers all over the world. The company was founded by Steve Wozniak, Ronald Wayne, and Steve Jobs on April 1, 1976, in Los Altos, California (Library of Congress, n.d.). They wanted to change people’s perception of computers by making them affordable, user-friendly, and small enough to be used in offices and homes. According to Jobs’ biography, the company’s name was suggested by him after visiting the apple farm as it sounded spirited, non-intimidating, and fun (Rawlinson, 2017). The first computer created by Wozniak and Jobs in 1977 was Apple I – it had a typewriter-like keyboard and could connect to a screen or a regular TV (Rawlinson, 2017). The next version, Apple II, had the first-ever color graphics, which introduction may be regarded as the evolution in the computer industry. Thus, when the company went public in 1980, its sales were impressive. In 1984, Apple consolidated its success creating Macintosh, the first personal computer (PC) with onscreen icons, a graphical user interface, and a mouse.

At the same time, due to inner struggles between founders and computers’ high costs, Jobs and Wozniak left the company. In the 1990s, Apple experienced a considerable decline due to the development of the PC market and a lack of individual innovations. However, the situation has changed with Job’s return in 1997 (Hill, n.d.). He introduced new products, including iPod, iPad, iPhone, and the Mac Airbook, new services, and the retail chain. After Job’s death in 2011, Apple Inc. is headed by Tim Cook.

SWOT Analysis

Apple’s Strengths

  • Apple Inc., may be regarded as the best global brand with the value of more than $408 billion (Interbrand, 2021).
  • Apple Inc. is a leading company in relation to innovations as almost all products that have recently changed the industry and the world in general belong to it.
  • Apple Inc. heavily invest in its continuous development and proficient research for future growth on the basis of advanced monitoring of customers’ needs.
  • Apple Inc.’s products and services are chosen by millions of people worldwide for work and personal use due to their trust to the company’s sustainability, excellent quality, respect to privacy, and attention to consumers’ demands. Moreover, Apple’s products are frequently regarded as the symbol of status that makes them more desirable.

Apple’s Weaknesses

  • Apple’s products are almost unaffordable for low-income consumers due to high prices.
  • The company’s focus on loyal customers limits its opportunities that may be given by more excessive promotion and advertisement.
  • The incompatibility of Apple’s products with other software limits their purchasing and use.
  • Apple plans to enter markets, including payment services or game and video content streaming, without sufficient competency.
  • Apple is involved in unethical business practices foe the creation of barriers for rivals (Nellis, 2020).

Apple’s Opportunities

  • Apple may use its reputation and technologies to expand its customer base using digital platforms and distribution network.
  • Apple may apply new technologies, including artificial intelligence, for its products and services.
  • Apple may build new opportunities from its teams’ expansion and attraction of highly qualified specialists.
  • Apple may pay attention to emerging global trends, for instance, smart wearable technologies or self-driving software technologies, to determine its vector of innovations.

Apple’s Threats

  • Apple may be negatively affected by the economic consequences of COVID-19.
  • Apple’s technologies may be used with malicious intent, and there is no efficient protection against it.
  • Competition in Apple’s industry is continuously increasing.
  • Apple’s reputation may be negatively affected by multiple lawsuits from consumers dissatisfied with the quality of its products.

Internal Strengths and Weaknesses

The company’s most obvious internal strength is its focus on innovations and effective rapid innovative processes supported by its history, reputation, resources, and capabilities. In addition, the introduction of the premium pricing strategy allows it to increase profits even when sales volumes decrease. In addition, the company’s functional structure and its culture of responsibility are its major strengths as well. All activities are coordinated, and every employee is aware of his tasks and responsibility for their completion. At the same time, the company’s strict regulations create internal pressure and affect employees’ satisfaction, motivation, and creativity.

External Strengths and Weaknesses

  • Economic environment: The stability of developed country’s economies and the rapid growth of developing countries’ markets are external strengths of Apple Inc. that provide multiple opportunities for expansion.
  • Socio-cultural environment: Millions of people across the world are aware of Apple’s products as the symbol of status and wealth, and their desire to obtain the company’s products creates the company’s another external strength. Another advantage provided by the social environment are the increasing use of mobile technologies.
  • Political/Legal environment: Developed countries’ stable politics create the opportunity of trade for Apple. At the same time, trade disputes between countries may negatively affect the company’s performance.
  • Competitive environment: Apple remains highly competitive due to its innovations, customer loyalty, the quality of products, and brand identity. However, the competition in the computer and mobile industries are constantly increasing, and Apple’s rivals offer quality products at affordable prices.
  • Global environment: Global expansion and brand global awareness are Apple’s external strengths, however, its external weakness refers to limited distribution network.
  • Technological environment: The growing mobile market, the dependence of businesses and people on digital systems, and increasing cloud computing demand create opportunities for Apple’s growth and determine its innovations creating substantial advantages (Chen et al., 2021).
  • Natural environment: Apple’s focus on sustainability and recycling creates its external strength.

Strategic Evaluation

Apple’s corporate-level strategies, including the focus on innovations and excellence in quality, the differentiation of products, the integration of software and hardware, global expansion, and attention to loyal consumers’ needs allow the company to increase its profitability and improve the reputation. In addition, the company benefits from alliances and cooperation with other companies from different spheres for competitive advantages and brand awareness. Moreover, Apple attracts customers by personalized services and the culture of excellence and positive experience.

Corporate Structure

Apple’s corporate structure may be generally described as hierarchical and functional that allows to facilitate the articulation of corporate vision and ensure the efficient realization of creative ideas. Vice presidents, senior vice presidents, chief design and chief operation officers report directly to the company’s CEO and form a group that regularly meets for the coordination of the company’s activities and strategies. Product development requires coordination achieved through a centralized structure of control and command, in which top-management industrial design groups ensure collaboration and the development of key parameters (Hill, n.d.). In addition, the company promotes the culture of personal accountability and adherence to the highest standards of quality.

Strategic Recommendations

In general, Apple’s innovations, consumer loyalty, diversified products, and brand awareness along with global expansion ensure the company’s stable growth and development. Thus, it is recommended to continue rapid and even aggressive innovation strategies. However, it is also recommended to pay closer attention to the ethics of the company’s decisions and cultural peculiarities of people in different countries for the correction of its targeted promotion to increase its competitive advantages. In addition, it is recommended to test the ability of employees to express their creativity and share their ideas openly.


Chen, X., Liu, Y., & Gong, H. (2021). Apple Inc. strategic marketing analysis and evaluation. Proceedings of the 2021 3rd International Conference on Economic Management and Cultural Industry (ICEMCI 2021), 3053-3061.

Hill, C. W. L. (n.d.). Case 32. Organization at Apple. School of Business, University of Washington, Seattle.

Interbrand. (2021). Best global brands. Interbrand.

Library of Congress. (n.d.). The founding of Apple Computers, Inc. Library of Congress.

Nellis, S. (2020). UK regulators take aim at Apple’s search engine deal with Google. Reuters.

Rawlinson, N. (2017). History of Apple: The story of Steve Jobs and the company he founded. Macworld.

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