Apple Case Study

Total Length: 6675 words ( 22 double-spaced pages)

Total Sources: 25

Page 1 of 22


Ideas are part of the grand process of business. Businesses create unique products and services that are then marketed to a customer base. This involves the use of innovation, commercialization and intellectual property rights to both create something unique, have the ability to market, and have the rights to protect it. Without either of these aspects, it can be difficult for a business to generate something worthwhile.

The case study of Apple Inc., and the iPhone is one that provides the tell-tale sign of innovation. People like Steve Jobs work hard to contribute something to their respective industries that is one of a kind, thus making their companies highly successful. To be a pioneer in an industry is to gain a chance to dominate in an emerging or established market. The iPhone represents the epitome of a new product revolutionizing the cell phone and electronics industry.

Without the hard work and dedication to protecting the rights and marketability of the iPhone, it would not be the most popular smartphone in the world. Therefore, it is so important to have a proper balance of commercialization, innovation, and have a firm understanding of property rights. Without any of these, products like the iPhone and Kindle would not be what they are today. This essay will provide insight into the definitions of innovation, commercialization, and intellectual property rights as well as provide a business case study on Apple Inc. and its flagship product, the iPhone and Amazon Inc and its Kindle. Additionally, concepts like the innovation and commercial funnel will be discussed to offer an encapsulation of the various concepts discussed and how to execute them in the real world. The hope is to provide the foundation from which discussion of these key concepts can generate a better understanding of what it takes to be a successful company in a world with constant changes and evolution of products and services.


Define Innovation

Innovation has various meanings. However, a popular concept of innovation is the creation of a new practice, object, or idea. “Rogers (1995) defines an innovation as “an idea, practice, or object that is perceived as new by an individual or other unit of adoption” (Tan and Hunter, 2002, p. 227). Those that innovate provide the public with something perceived as ‘original’, ‘never experienced’. For example, Steve Jobs is a common figure related to innovation. He became an innovator through the introduction of the iPhone. “Steve Jobs was a master of innovation. A survey of his products revealed this deep-seated habit of innovation. Innovation exuded from everything Jobs touched” (Toguchi, 2017, p. 63). The iPhone enabled the reinvention of the cellphone and electronic industry and provided the foundation for what would become the smartphone.

Stamm also provided a key definition of innovation and that is creativity and design (Von Stamm, 2008). In fact, Stamm provided the definition of multiple kinds of innovation. For example, there is architectural innovation or innovation that defines a product or process’ basic configuration, establishing marketing and technical agendas, guiding further development (Von Stamm, 2008). Regular innovation is a kind that involves change, building on established production and technical competence, applied then to existing customers and markets. Thusly, allowing an entrenchment of existing resources and skills.

There is also revolutionary innovation. This sort of innovation renders and disrupts established production and technical competence obsolete, while also applied to existing customers and markets (Von Stamm, 2008). For example, the iPhone made regular phones obsolete. However, the new market became the existing one with the same customers. This according to Stamm is revolutionary innovation because now at the forefront of telephones is the smartphone.

Define Commercialization

Part of innovation is commercialization. Part of implementation is the idea of combining certain aspects: idea selection, development and commercialization (Von Stamm, 2008). While creativity is essential to the process and use of commercialization, the definition itself of the word is complicated. If one examines other interpretations of commercialization it often becomes a debate of what constitutes commercialization. For example, if commercialization includes just sales or various types of revenue like funding and licensing fees, it may alter the meaning of it.

If only certain kinds of sales are included in commercialization with exclusion of sales to say, government agencies, it further changes the meaning of the word. Anything can be added in to be considered as the suitable benchmark for sales. However, for the general purpose of defining the word, sales can be used to define commercialization (Von Stamm, 2008). To put it simply, commercialization is the act of making something sellable.

When Steve Jobs first created the iPhone, he had to implement a design that made it sellable to customers both new and existing. People hailed the iPhone as a marvelous invention because it was so beautiful in its design and interface (Toguchi, 2017). People came to understand that the functionality and the design worked together to make a product that is both appealing and gives steady and reliable performance. Therefore, the product than became able to be sold to millions of customers worldwide (Toguchi, 2017).

When a product is sellable to customers it provides a means of profit for companies.
People in these companies work hard to make a product appealing to customers. Whether this is through advertisements or fundamental changes in the design to appeal to new tastes or market trends, businesses take steps to make items and services marketable.

Discuss the Link between Commercialization and Innovation

One cannot have innovation without commercialization. There is no point in having a product that is innovative if one cannot market it effectively. That is where the connection between commercialization and innovation is born. As mentioned earlier, Stamm noted that commercialization and creativity are needed to manifest innovation. Later in Stamm’s book on page 254 and 255, Stamm introduces the ‘Management of Knowledge’. Management of ideas and storing information of past and current projects is a key to developing innovation and commercialization.

State their importance for an organization

If one wishes to produce a new product, a company would have to take information from past projects and notably, past failures to see what might work and what will not work. “In fact, I would suggest that all major stages of a new product development should be covered in a company’s approach towards model management: idea management, development and review, commercialization and monitoring” (Von Stamm, 2008, p. 255). Should Company A wish to revamp a toy line by adding a new toy, potential candidates could come from unfinished projects or a reimaging of old ones. Through the data collected, Company A can produce a new toy that can then be marketed to an existing customer base.

To commercialize the toy, thus making it marketable to the existing customer base, the toy must not be too controversial and suit the needs of the customers. Commercialization and innovation is a complicated process that promotes a connection between both concepts. Without each other, a product cannot fully appeal to customers and become something that defines a company. There is an integral connection between commercialization and innovation.

Define Intellectual Property

Intellectual property can also be a tricky term to define. There are numerous methods by which a definition of complex terms such as these may be obtained. While some provide partial meaning, most definitions are superficial at best. The best way to define intellectual property is the sum of its parts. “Intellectual property is the enumerated sum of its legal doctrines; is the enumerated sum of the objects it regulates; is a type of property; is whatever the law stipulates it to be; and is whatever it is intuitively felt to be” (George, 2012, p. 51).

State the importance of intellectual property in relation to innovation and commercialization

Intellectual property is what helps someone sell and maintain rights to an object. Using again the iPhone example, Apple Inc has the intellectual property rights to the design and name of the iPhone. Without these rights, people can copy it and produce similar products, thus producing competition for the company. The reason the company has managed to survive various economic recessions with their products rarely on sale is because they are the only ones that can deliver the experience of having an


Part of innovation is creativity. The other part is commercialization. When one has a product, it owns exclusive rights to, they can market and sell it how they want. Their rights to the product are protected. Therefore, intellectual property rights are so important. Without these, it would be extremely hard for any business to remain relevant and profitable without their flagship products. The electronics industry especially has constant competition with new releases every year. Which is why having a unique and highly marketable product is rare and must be protected to maintain the allure, that profitability


The two organizations selected are Apple and Amazon. Apple Inc was formerly known as Apple Computer Company from 1976 to 1977 and Apple Computer Inc. from 1977 to 2007. With the unveiling of the iPhone, it just became Apple Inc. As of the 2017 fiscal year, Apple’s international revenue is $229 billion. With a high level of brand loyalty, Apple Inc has become one of the world’s most valuable brands (Janssen, 2017).

The reason for this success is the revolutionary iPhone. The first of its kind, it provided customers with a feel of a computer in the palm of their hands. What began in 2007 with Steve Jobs and his team of developers, they turned into an App Store in 2008, and the iTunes Store in 2009 (Janssen, 2017). Steadily, Apple became synonymous with success and thus people began to buy iPhones and Apple products driving continued brand loyalty.

Many people feel the reason for this upsurge is the meshing of design and marketability. Apple Inc. marketed their products well with celebrity endorsements of their iPhone models (Janssen, 2017). These celebrity endorsements along with appealing commercials made the iPhone and other Apple products desirable to the masses from young to old. The trend continues today with many celebrities continually taking pictures of themselves with their iPhone logo in full display. The tie-in of Apple products with status created an indelible bond with consumers,.....

Show More ⇣

     Open the full completed essay and source list


     Order a one-of-a-kind custom essay on this topic


Backer, L. (2013). Transnational Corporations' Outward Expression of Inward Self-Constitution: The Enforcement of Human Rights by Apple, Inc. Indiana Journal of Global Legal Studies, 20(2), p.805.

Curwen, P. and Whalley, J. (2016). Mobile telecommunications in a high speed world. CRC Press.

D&B Hoovers. (2018). Company Profile. [online] Available at: [Accessed 3 Jun. 2018].

Do, T. (2018). The Real Production Costs of Smartphones. [online] Available at: [Accessed 2 Jun. 2018].

ETS (2018). Drive high performance with balanced scorecards like Apple & Microsoft use - ETS. [online] ETS. Available at: [Accessed 6 Jun. 2018].

FTS (2011). 4.5 The Balanced Scorecard and [online] Available at: [Accessed 6 Jun. 2018].

George, A. (2012). Constructing Intellectual Property. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

Gong, Y. (2013). Global Operations Strategy. Berlin, Heidelberg: Springer.

Harms, L. (2012). The enforcement of intellectual property rights. Geneva, Switzerland: World Intellectual Property Organization.
Harvard Business School Press (2011). Developing a business case. Boston, Mass.: Harvard Business Review Press.

Janssen, S. (2017). The world almanac and book of facts 2018. New York: World Almanac Books.

Keyes, J. (2016). Managing IT Performance to Create Business Value. Taylor and Francis.

Laderman, J. (1999). Business Week. New York: McGraw-Hill, p.174.

Mazzucato, M. (2015). The Entrepreneurial State: Debunking Public Vs. Private Sector Myths. Perseus Book LLC (Ingram).

McKelvey, M. and Lassen, A. (2013). Managing knowledge intensive entrepreneurship. Edward Elgar Publishing.

Pierce, T. and Wooldridge, D. (2014). The Business of iOS App Development. Berkeley, CA: Apress.

Ritchee, R. (2018). 11 years ago today, Steve Jobs introduced the iPhone. [online] iMore. Available at: [Accessed 5 Jun. 2018].

Schramm, L. (2017). Innovation Technology: A Dictionary. Walter de Gruyter GmbH & Co KG,.

Score (2018). What Did Steve Jobs Sell to Raise The Seed Money To Start Apple Computers?. [online] Available at: [Accessed 3 Jun. 2018].

SLYWOTZKY, A. (2018). The Real Secret Of Kindle’s Success. [online] Fast Company. Available at: [Accessed 3 Jun. 2018].

Smith, T. (2011). Pricing strategy. Cengage Learning.

Staff (2014). Apple sues Samsung for $2bn as tech rivals head back to court. [online] the Guardian. Available at: [Accessed 4 Jun. 2018].

Takahashi, D. (2018). Intel’s former president leads ARM-based server chip maker Ampere. [online] VentureBeat. Available at: [Accessed 2 Jun. 2018].

Talmor, E. and Vasvari, F. (2011). International private equity. Chichester, West Sussex: Wiley.

Tan, F. and Hunter, M. (2002). Advanced topics in global information management. Hershey, Pa.: Idea Group Pub.

Tetzeli, R. (2015). Becoming Steve Jobs. [S.I.]: The Crown Publishing Group.

Toguchi, R. (2017). The Winning Habits of Steve Jobs. iUniverse, p.63.

Von Stamm, B. (2008). Managing innovation, design and creativity. Chichester, U.K.: John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.
ey & Sons, Ltd.
Related Essays


Apple exists in an oligopoly market structure, wherein a small handful of companies control the market. Apple, along with Samsung, Microsoft, Alphabet (Google) and Nokia, essentially control the tech industry (smart phones, computers, portable devices, etc.). While smaller companies do exist, it is these larger companies that set the stage for prices, products and innovation. To what extent Apple’s current status as a blue chip stock may be representative of the company’s actual true value and is a question that an analysis of micro- and macroeconomic trends and conditions may… Continue Reading...

Apple Market Share Increase for Ipad 4

Apple needs to increase its market share for iPad 4. Product outline Apple Inc. is a well known technology firm that specializes in designing, production and selling of computers, mobile phones and music related devices. The most outstanding feature of Apple Inc. is the brand-perception as well as identification. Apple has built itself to become a cult-brand over the last decade with the strategy to invest and market iTunes, QuickTime and iMaclines working to fortify the brand loyalty hence the cult-brand formation. The short-term goals that Apple Inc. put in… Continue Reading...

Apple Increase in Market Share for IPad 4

Apple needs to increase its market share for iPad 4. Product outline Apple Inc. is a well known technology firm that specializes in designing, production and selling of computers, mobile phones and music related devices. The most outstanding feature of Apple Inc. is the brand-perception as well as identification. Apple has built itself to become a cult-brand over the last decade with the strategy to invest and market iTunes, QuickTime and iMaclines working to fortify the brand loyalty hence the cult-brand formation. The short-term goals that Apple Inc. put in… Continue Reading...

Apple's Human Resources Strategy

This can be a significant challenge when the growth comes as rapidly as it did for Apple in the 2000s. The company's growth trajectory started with an established culture under Steve Jobs, the introduction of the iPod, and then the introduction of the iPhone started Apple on its current hypergrowth course. The new initiatives that the company is working on today may yet signal a future round of hypergrowth, which places significant emphasis on the need for the company to have a strong organizational culture that contributes to its success, and a culture that can be passed along quickly to new recruits so that they buy… Continue Reading...

Apple Expansion into Myanmar

Global Economic Conditions Apple operates in over 100 countries already, but there are still some markets available for the company. The one that has been chosen for the next international expansion in Myanmar. Apple already has a presence in most other Southeast Asian countries, but Myanmar has only recently become a democracy. It is a poor country, but relatively large, and is starting to see some strong economic growth. Foreign companies are starting to make their market entry. The trends for Myanmar are all quite recent. Five years ago there was little economic… Continue Reading...

Apple Vs Federal Government

Privacy and Security: Apple vs. Federal Government With increased usage of smartphones and other mobile devices, concerns over unauthorized access to private and confidential data stored in the devices have soared. In recent times, Apple Inc., one of the largest manufacturers of smartphones in the U.S. and worldwide, resorted to robust cryptographic techniques in an attempt to protect data customers store on its devices. The move has led to a fierce battle between Apple and the federal government, with the latter citing national security concerns. The government's concerns over national security have gained… Continue Reading...

Apples Stock Movement 2017

Apple Inc. Stock In 2017, AAPL has performed quite well. It started the year off at $115 and today is selling for $170. 2017 has been a great year for stocks, with the election of President Trump seeming to have a lot to do with the rise in equities across the board, as the market has expected the President to introduce tax cuts that would be good for businesses like Apple. I was attracted specifically to Apple because I am an Apple user, enjoy the products, have many friends who… Continue Reading...

Apple Investment and Financial Analysis

Apple Inc. Investment Analysis and Recommendations Apple Inc. is an American multinational company specializing in designing and producing mobile telecommunication devices that include iPhone, computer software and hardware, Apple TV, Apple Watch, iPod, and other electronic devices. Apple was incorporated and publicly registered in 1977. Headquartered in California, Apple is one of the most successful American companies in term of revenue with the annual revenue reaching $233.7 billion at the end of 2015 fiscal year. On February 2016, Apple recorded $521.3 billion worth of market capitalization. While Apple designs the… Continue Reading...

Apple Finance Department

Introduction and Company Overview Apple is an integrated designer and marketer of consumer electronics. The company’s products include computers, smartphones, tablets, wearables, as well as the software that powers these devices. Apple is based in California, but contracts out manufacturing to third parties, typically in China. It runs physical retail stores, and online stores, in dozens of countries around the world. The global nature of Apple’s business presents significant challenges for the finance department. In recent years, the company has been so profitable that it had massive cash holdings. These have typically been either… Continue Reading...

Using Apple & Samsung to Compare GAAP and IFRS

at play. The first issue is that comparability is poor here. Apple\\'s financial statements were produced according to US GAAP, which is by far the best standard for producing understandable financial statements. Samsung\\'s statements are produced using Korean IFRS. In terms of comparability, there are differences between how these two different methodologies arrive at some of these numbers. One of the major differences between GAAP and IFRS is with revenue recognition (IAS, 2018). Even with numbers that are seemingly consistent, such a top line revenue, the fact that they are compiled differently under the different systems makes it more challenging to… Continue Reading...

How Environment Influences Business

is to extensively analyze the effect of the internal and external environment on Apple Inc. Brief Background of the Company Apple, Inc. is one of the most renowned and successful companies in the markets. The prevalent company with a market capitalization of $656 billion is pervasive. Since its advancement by Steve Jobs, Apple has come to be one of the largest companies in the market and barely needs an introduction. Apple Inc.’s business operations encompasses the manufacturing and retailing of iPhones, iPads, and a sequence of unveiled laptops and desktops such as the Mac and the MacBook and MacAir. In addition, the company… Continue Reading...

Corporate Social Responsibility Its Success and Failure

by such companies may go beyond the regulatory requirements or the groups for the protection of the environment (Belfiore, 2016). Apple Inc. has emerged as a leading global manufacturer, marketer and designer of media accessories, communications devices, portable audio players and computers. It was established in 1977 in the state of California. It is now ranked as the largest company dealing with IT; based on revenue and the total number of assets under its ownership and control. It is also ranked second in the mobile manufacturing niche. The CSR activities at Apple are spearheaded by its Vice President in charge of environmental matters, Lisa Jackson. She reports to Tim Cook,… Continue Reading...

Analysis of an Organizational Vision

what job those values are so embedded in this company that Apple will do extremely well” (Rowland, 2018). One of the key aspects that are similar between Apple and Toyota is that both corporations constantly focus on innovation. Secondly, both companies clearly indicate that they are ready to take up change and encourage it within the organization amongst the labor force. In addition, both Apple and Toyota believe in having both passionate and talented employees regardless of the position in which they hold in the organization. However, there are key dissimilarities between the two companies in terms of their vision statements.… Continue Reading...

BUS599 Module 2 Case Study

style, staff, systems, strategy, structure, and skills (Falletta, 2005). My Fortune "Best 100" organization is Apple. While there are many OD models that have been suggested over time, McKinsey 7S Framework appears to be the most consistent in the analysis of how well placed or situated Apple is to attain its targets and strategic aims. This is more so the case given the comprehensive nature of its outlook and the equal importance given to various key elements. While structure and strategy have in the past gained great prominence in the analysis of organizational effectiveness, this framework highlights the equal relevance of shared values, style, systems,… Continue Reading...

Rivalry Strategy Tool

The worldwide smartphone manufacturing industry is significantly competitive. The top four competitors in the smartphone manufacturing industry comprise of Samsung, Apple, Huawei and OPPO. In accordance to statistics from the 3rd Quarter of the 2016 fiscal year, Samsung was number 1 in the industry with a market share of 21 percent. Second was Apple with a market share of 12.5 percent. The third competing company was Huawei with a market share of 9.3 percent, and lastly OPPO with a market share of 7.1%. The fifth company is Vivo, which boasts a market share of 5.9 percent. The other smartphone manufacturing companies around the globe account for a combined market share… Continue Reading...

Corporations and Global Capitalism

if one or two are missing, the whole thing could blow. The same goes for Apple exploiting laborers in China. These laborers are essentially like slaves in a factory who do not even get the kind of wages needed to support a family; their contribution to society is that we all get to have smart phones (so that we can even do our Amazon shopping while we are on the go using our phones to connect to the Internet), and they are certainly not in a position to develop themselves or their skills so as to become the masters… Continue Reading...

Abortion and Ethics

its nature. For example, an apple tree is supposed to grow and produce apples. If it does, then it is judged a good tree. If it does not, it is judged to be a bad tree. An apple tree that produces plums would be against nature and therefore an abomination. Likewise a woman’s body is designed to conceive, bear, and carry a child to full term and give birth to it into the world. This is the natural progression of events following procreation in which conception takes place. To go against the rational nature is… Continue Reading...

Business News from Around the World

the facts. Dou (2017) reports for The Wall Street Journal that Apple faces stiff competition in China as a result of Chinese "upstarts like Oppo" which are eating into Apple's smart phone sales. The article depicts the situation in China as one in which the American tech company has faced significant and substantial hurdles over the years -- and this one, the rise of competitor companies scratching away at Apple's market share -- is just the latest. Dou (2017) shows in vivid terminology that Apple is not unstoppable in China, as she uses words to dramatize the barriers Apple faces: "The… Continue Reading...

Poems and Chinese Literature

of apples. A series of travelers steal the apples, prompting the speaker to engage in fisticuffs with them. The result is a bevy of images explicitly denoting violence and pain: "A fist came crashing into my nose, and I landed several feet away. I staggered up, rubbed my nose. It felt soft and sticky, like it wasn't stuck to my face anymore but only dangling from it. Blood was flowing like tears from a broken heart." The images that are the most noteworthy in this passage are that of blood, flowing… Continue Reading...

Communications and Integrated Marketing

mail, social media, and PR, among others. One company that has notably used this approach is Apple Inc, which is famous for its brand iPhone. From the day of release, June 2007, iPhone has has undergone yearly modifications to better the brand. (Ktourgelis, 2016) Apple Inc carried out one of the most successful marketing campaigns for its brand. Two major factors led to this success. Firstly, Apple’s smart phone was a new product in the market. Secondly, they concentrated on customers who could adopt the new smart phone and influence the rest of the population. The iPhone was revolutionary in itself, since it combined phone with… Continue Reading...

sample essay writing service

Cite This Resource:

Latest APA Format (6th edition)

Copy Reference
"Apple" (2018, May 31) Retrieved January 25, 2022, from

Latest MLA Format (8th edition)

Copy Reference
"Apple" 31 May 2018. Web.25 January. 2022. <>

Latest Chicago Format (16th edition)

Copy Reference
"Apple", 31 May 2018, Accessed.25 January. 2022,