Apple is a world re-known technology giant. Over the years the company has produced big brands such as the MacBook, iPod and iPhone, among others. This firm has been able to maintain its profitability over the years. Its business strategy is keeping its operations profitable (Kang, Chang & Song 2013, p. 181). This paper will discuss one of the company’s product lines and the strategy that it has employed to maintain it. Over the recent years, Apple’s iPhone has been a market leader in the smartphone industry. The success of iPhone is the result of a combination of strategies

The iPhone is a smartphone from the mobile devices industry. The smartphones industry is rapidly growing. The iPhone uses iOS, an operating system that is owned by Apple. Competition in this industry largely depends on the operating system of the device (Kenney & Pon 2011, pp. 239-261). The brand is facing competition from other operating systems, such as Google’s Android and Microsoft’s Windows (Kang, Chang & Song 2013, p. 200). These are the major competitors or iPhone. The Android operating system is its major competitor, since various other brands use it. This operating platform is supported by many famous brands. Smartphones using the Android platform have been sold in large quantities all over the world. The iPhone, on the other hand, owns the biggest market share in the industry. It focuses on the quality of its devices. These phone target high-end consumers who enjoy superb user interface. Proper positioning of the brand is constantly expanding its demand. The industry can be classified as a duopoly, because Apple and Samsung are the only companies that have made significant profits in the recent years. Apple controls the third of all finances in the smartphone market. The competition is tough, but it does not affect iPhone. Apple has an ecosystem in the smartphone industry, while Samsung has an ecosystem in relation to the Android platform (Kenney & Pon 2011, pp. 239-261). In the smartphone industry, structural innovation is very inactive due to the advantage which is given to the new entrants. Apple’s iPhone targets high-end customers and such targeting has ensured that it remains a world leader with regard to revenue.

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According to Menzel (2014), Apple has numerous capabilities and resources that help it retain its leadership in the smartphone industry. The company’s brand value is a major resource. Its devices manage to combine various functions, such as communication, internet connection and quality storage. Apple also wanted to make its device simple to use. The iPhone combines all these features and, therefore, it has won the trust of consumers. It is a valued brand, and this feature gives it an advantage over its competitors. The iPhone’s operating system is unique as well. No brand in the market shares its features giving it another competitive advantage. In a bid to provide a quality user interface, the company concentrates on building decent hardware, which remains unmatched in the market (Baroto, Abdullah & Wan 2012, p. 120). The multimedia capabilities of the phone are a significant boost for the company. The organization of the firm’s structure is another advantage. It has over time maintained its core values such as maintaining the simplicity of user interface. The brand’s ideals have been observed since its inception thus winning consumer trust.  Competitors who try to build products to outdo iPhone fail. They end up making user interface too complex. Many consumers target iPhone as a symbol of quality. Customers also ignore cheaper brands so as to enjoy the feeling of status associated with iPhone that is provided for some their extra cash.
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The structure of Apple, Inc. has affected its operation in the smartphone industry. It maintains high pricing and strong branding as its defensive mechanisms. Various factors are likely to affect the company during its operations. Competition from different players is one factor that greatly affects Apple, Inc. The company faces aggressive competition from other manufacturers of smartphones. They imitate, advertise aggressively and come up with innovative ideas. There are also low switching costs, which make customers more willing to adopt other brands. The firm has addressed this issue by expanding its research and innovation initiatives and increasing switching costs (Baroto, Abdullah & Wan 2012, p. 120). It has maintained its previous features in the same condition thus making them easily transferable. Strong branding makes it difficult for consumers to switch. The buyers do not have any direct bargaining power, because the company has many customers spread across the globe. Single buyers have no significant effect for the firm’s profits. The suppliers do not have any significant impact, as the company has started producing its own chips for the development of new products. The company has advanced technologically so that it is not threatened by new entrants. The unique products that it offers to the customers are differentiated from other competitors. Hence, new entrants will not have any significant impact on the profitability of iPhone for Apple. A new entrant will need to make a lot of investments into research and development to be at par with Apple, Inc. Lastly, the company is not threatened by substitution because of its well-known brand and excellent marketing campaigns.

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According to Lee, Ho & Hsu (2015), Apple, Inc. has pursued broad differentiation as its generic strategy in relation to the iPhone product line. The company has always been investing heavily in research and development. This department allows the company to keep introducing even more products that meet consumer expectations. It has thus been offering products that are entirely different from its competitors. IPhone’s hardware is built to last in comparison to the rivals’ phones. The brand is elegant yet simple and properly branded, which differentiates it from competitors. The operating system of the phone is unique. It offers simple user interface, which the competitors fail to imitate. After all, Apple has a strong brand name that attracts rich customers. Companies pursuing differentiation generic strategy should have a widely accepted and trusted name among consumers. In this respect, Apple has successfully availed iPhones with superior features to the buyers. The firm has always been running effective marketing campaigns. It is adopting a strategy of fast moving consumer goods of availing new products within short time periods. These campaigns have various messages and really impact consumers. The marketing strategies of Apple are also well developed so as to meet customer expectations. These campaigns are creating awareness about the benefits of the iPhone in customers’ lifestyle. Marketing campaigns in the broad differentiation generic strategy play a significant role by keeping the company profitable. In conclusion, Apple’s, Inc. strategy in this product line has been successful so far.

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According to Correy (2016), The Patriot National, Inc. has an updated strategy for 2016. The previous year was successful in that the firm saw financial growth due to the proper execution of its growth strategy. The company has various resources and capabilities that offer it a competitive advantage:

  • A powerful operating system offers customer satisfaction. The firm boasts of relationships with over 100 carriers and over 4000 agencies and looks forward to increasing these numbers;
  • The company offers various services that have no competitors in market, such as workers’ compensation and insurance service provision. It also provides human resource management and different technologies. The company has offered valuable services which have ensured competitive advantage over the rivals;
  • The firm aims at providing world class services to its customers, which create a decent competitive advantage. Increased operations will lead to more revenues and profits hence increasing returns to the shareholders;
  • The company enjoys support of its board of directors. The board of directors always provides its expert ideas in all areas in the best interest of the organization;

The available resources have enabled the company to invest in the fields that have created even greater opportunities. Thus, the company has resources and capabilities which provide it with a competitive advantage.