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An expansion of the network within accessories

Capitalizing on the iPad

Apple’s latest release, the iPad, is a lightweight, portable, tablet computer, similar to the iPhone, that allows customers to download applications, check email, and play music all at the touch of a button. Both the iPhone and the iPad can multitask, allowing customers to read a web page while downloading email in the background over wireless networks. The arrival of the iPad brought a simultaneous expansion of the network of accessories. Because the iPad was designed with an exposed screen and without a camera, separate keyboard, memory card slots, or expansion ports, one might say it was specifically built for accessories. Many owners will modify it in some way, whether for mere decoration or hard-core protection. A few of the new accessories include:

■ iPad Clear Armor screen protector—$35.

■ iPad Antique book case cover—$40.

■ iPad wireless keyboard—$99.

■ iPad overcoat sleeve—$35.

■ iPad Joule luxury stand—$130.

Apple has consistently outperformed its key rivals through the development of its MP3 player, the iPod, and continues to make its products smaller and less expensive, while providing complementary features such as games and applications. For the iPhone, Apple developed a unique application called Siri, a voice-activation system that is capable of recognizing voice commands. Siri can perform all kinds of functions from dialing a contact and creating an email to location services such as “Find my Phone,” ensuring lost phones are found quickly.

Apple’s latest offering is a new service called the iCloud. The iCloud has the ability to collect all

of the content, including videos, photos, songs, books, etc., from customer devices such as iPods,

iPads, and iPhones in one secure location in “the cloud.” Apple customers no longer have to worry about backing up their applications or data because everything is automatically uploaded and stored in the iCloud when using an Apple device. In a fast-paced, technology-driven sector, with competitors quickly following suit, Apple is constantly pressured to develop new products and product extensions. Luckily Apple stays ahead of the pack by focusing on the following key competitive advantages:

Customer focus: Apple is driven by customer satisfaction and ensures customers are deeply

involved in product development and application development.

Resources and capabilities: Apple continues to invest heavily in research and development to take advantage of new technologies, improved facilities, and cloud infrastructures.

Strategic vision: Apple has a clear alignment of its vision, mission, and business leadership and goals.

Branding: Apple is the leader in brand loyalty as it has achieved cult status with its authentic

product image.

Quality focus: Apple has an outstanding commitment to quality.24