Apple and Microsoft are the two largest firms in the industry of consumer electronics and computer manufacture. The two companies tend to have numerous similarities and differences. Microsoft and Apple simultaneously initiated their corporate structure. Currently, they are the best-earning top innovators and major rivals in the market, and their products are globally most utilized. This paper evaluates similarities and differences between Microsoft and Apple by exploring their structure, products, and overall success.
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Apple Company tends to emphasize on its efforts concerning design and manufacture of the consumer electronics, such as personal computers, mobile phones, and related software products (Arthur, 2012). Microsoft appears to have adopted the above aspect, when they started producing their own Microsoft phone products.
The co-founders of both Microsoft and Apple are recognized as being the driving force behind the brands. Bill Gates is famous for accomplishing most of his dream of placing a computer in every home and on every desk in addition to his philanthropic work through Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. On the other hand, the late Steve Jobs, the co-founder of Apple, appeared to be an innovative genius and an iconoclast. Both of them are recognized as the richest and greatest entrepreneurs on a global scale (Arthur, 2012).
Both Microsoft and Apple tend to have retail stores. However, Apple seems to have the upper hand by having over 200 stores as compared to the 20 stores of Microsoft. Microsoft Stores appear to have some form of similarity to Apple Stores, since both have specialists hired to provide software and hardware technical support and training. Microsoft provides services through Microsoft Answers, while Apple has the Genius Bar. Both of the companies’ branded stores offer the same product mix that comprises of mobility products and gaming consoles (Highland, 2011).
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While the two companies tend to be compared, Microsoft and Apple have more differences than similarities. Presently, about 90% of computers utilize Windows OS software and 5% use Mac system. Microsoft appears to have been so triumphant mainly due to the fact that they licensed out their software enabling various manufacturers like Dell, HP, and Sony to use it when manufacturing their products. The aforementioned fact creates competitive environment between the firms offering a broad variety of Windows computers for clients.
When considering the emergence of new innovative technologies to the market and their production, Apple tends to have a diverse strategy compared to that of Microsoft. Microsoft inclines to always desire to purchase any new feature entering the market to allow its continued domination. On the other hand, Apple wishes to develop new ideas and transform them into big ones. Apple recognizes the raw ideas and technologies that appear to be unexploited, where they end up developing them to offer appeal to the mass market. Some of the examples include the iPod, the Multitouch, the iPhone, the iTunes, and the GUI (Arthur, 2012). However, Microsoft usually identifies the already developed ideas and technologies. The company usually ends up taking a part or the whole of success of the minor companies. The enterprise achieves it through utilizing the power it already has by including its size in the industry. Thus, the company can deal with the competitive nature of the market as it gains an upper hand. The examples comprise of MSN, Xbox, Bing, Zune, Windows, and Windows Mobile.
In terms of their products, computers based on Windows OS tend to be more practical in their usage due to numerous reasons. Probably, the most common of these is that it has more users globally as compared to Mac. Microsoft realized consistency is extremely significant when utilizing computers. If every individual is utilizing a particular software and operating system, it is convenient to share, transfer, and exploit the data created, which prompts personalities to use that software. The Windows- based systems tend to be a standard in the market. In addition, their computers are cheap and conveniently upgradeable compared to Macintosh software and system. This is because the Windows-based system hardware is produced by thousands of global manufacturers (Zeichick, 2008).
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In terms of the Internet features and marketing, the firms also tend to apply diverse strategies. Microsoft is built to offer customer the most possible opportunities. It assumes that the buyer shall spend extra time finding the most optimal option. The search wizards of Microsoft guide consumers regarding the ideal way of making a decision. The company adopts it, since the target clients, such as students, fall into the category of people with less money and more time. On the other hand, Apple tends to perform its selling activities by adopting a minimalist marketing strategy. It usually narrows down the activities to a minimum, since they believe the consumers lack time to search for endless opportunities on the Internet. Therefore, the company can be considered as designing its products for individuals with more money and less time, such as corporations. The above facts prove that the marketing strategies of the two companies regarding products are designed for diverse consumers (Zeichick, 2008).
In the developing technological environment, it is essential to acquire the best product. However, there appears to be no considered product when it comes to Microsoft and Apple as it all depends on the wants and needs of the consumers. Microsoft products are superior when it comes to business and gaming, while Mac is the best for safety, art, and class. The companies are competitive in different areas. However, Microsoft still appears to be dominating the market due to its huge client base.