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SWOT analysis examines the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats in business. When completed, SWOT analysis addresses where your business currently stands and which obstacles are blocking the path to success.
If you’re unsure exactly how to get started, let’s look at a SWOT analysis case study of Apple. You can use this as a guide when conducting your own SWOT analysis.
SWOT Analysis of Apple, Inc.
Apple has recently concluded their Apple Event and released intimate details about the upcoming iPhone 7, new expansions for the Apple Watch, and their new Bluetooth headphones — AirPods.
They’ve come a long way since the initial Macintosh computer, but in business, there’s always room for adjustment.
One of Apple’s biggest strengths is their brand identity. Their products reflect beautiful design aesthetic, wealth, simplicity, and creativity. This concept was widely recognized during Apple’s simplistic but vibrant dance commercials for iPod touch.
Apple is now one of the most recognizable brands in the world. Their name goes a long way, and with such a dedicated fanbase, any product that is attached to the Apple name is often pre-ordered.
Additionally, Apple uses their brand to sell a lifestyle. A lifestyle of creativity, lavishness, and sleekness. This how they market their products: Not as a simple gadget, but as a way into their carefully designed world.
It’s no surprise Apple’s profit margins are high with every new iPhone, iPod, and Mac laptop upgrade.
The price of Apple products is indeed high.
While a standard PC laptop can cost as low as $200, Mac laptops run roughly $1100-$1200+. Sales reduce the price by $50-$100 on average, and the only group of buyers who receive consistent sales for Apple products are students.
While the high price is a part of Apple’s brand, it limits their buyers to only the middle to high classes.
For example, the new Bluetooth AirPods coming out are $159 — but no one would be surprised by that price tag, considering the high-end quality Apple promises . But many people won’t be able to afford the AirPods plus the new iPhone 7 .
The lower class are the majority of buyers on a global scale, but Apple’s products don’t cater to this demographic. This could be a limitation in their business model.
Apple has shown the potential benefit of collaborating with different strong and existing brands related to their marketplace. With their new AirPods, they’ve teamed up with Beats headphones, to introduce the new wireless BeatsX alongside their iPhone 7 reveal .
Additionally, Nintendo is bringing a new game, Mario Run, to iPhone — combining the Apple name with the well known and iconic game face of Nintendo. They’re another powerful brand, which could bring in huge numbers from the many Nintendo fans around the world.
Apple’s current innovation can be mocked, ridiculed, or cheered. But the business opportunities from collaborating with other large brands across the world will benefit the Apple brand immensely, so long as they continue to develop these business relationships.
Imitation has always been a big threat to Apple products.
While Apple’s design is smooth and simplistic, that is exactly what makes it easy to replicate. Global stores sell fake versions of iPhones and iPod touches which, on the outside, look nearly identical. And many people fall for the scams of “super cheap Apple products” sold online.
Another thing is competition.
In the smartphone market, Apple competes with big names like Samsung and the entire Android market. And while the competition is harsh, they may have made it even more intense by removing the headphone jack in the iPhone 7, in favor of developing their own proprietary products as substitutes.
This is causing backlash across the digital world. While it may work out in Apple’s favor, it may also cause a lower profit turnout this year. But only sales will tell.
As for you…
When conducting your own SWOT analysis or examining another SWOT analysis case study, understand that your company has many strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats.