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Apple Versus the Strategy Professors

This article was first published on 5 February 2013.

Apple is undoubtedly the poster child of the modern technological era and has established itself as the benchmark for innovation, design, convergence,  industry disruption etc.  This article from Bloomberg is a nice attempt to link some of Apple’s success back to conventional approaches to strategy and strategic analysis.  Two points in particular are worth noting:

  • A large measure of Apple’s success in the last ten to twelve years is attributable to products that have created entirely new categories and blurred the lines between industries as they were traditionally defined prior to Apple’s intervention.  There are lessons of both risk and opportunity in that story.
  • The article specifically draws out the importance of the economics of networks and switching costs.  Once again, the suggestion is that Apple’s leadership team (presumably Steve Jobs) were very conscious of the way in which these could be used to secure advantage and the risks that emerged if someone else managed to capture these benefits first.

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