Apple’s astonishing operational advantage

“If there’s any competitive advantage that investors continually underestimate for Apple, it’s the company’s operations,” Daniel Sparks writes for The Motley Fool. “Nowhere is this more evident than in Apple’s increasingly rapid product rollouts. Case in point: Apple’s new iPhone 5s. Despite a broader global rollout, it’s already reached nearly 100% availability in the U.S., Apple’s most important market.”

“Two years ago, the iPhone rollout was much smaller and slower,” Sparks writes. “Today, Apple has improved its iPhone rollout by leaps and bounds… Going into Christmas, Apple has managed to reach near 100% availability of the two new iPhone models in the U.S. (despite the much faster rollout), according to Piper Jaffray analyst Gene Munster’s latest research on iPhone availability at Apple retail stores.”

Sparks writes. “It’s no secret that Apple CEO Tim Cook is the company’s former chief operating officer — and a very successful one at that. Given Cook’s operational background, it’s not surprising that the company seems to rely heavily on operational tactics to stay ahead. For years, Apple has been known for its operational keenness. And now, as the world’s most valuable publicly traded company, Apple can use its size — a weapon that no other smaller company can match — as a weapon, too. The result is a first-class operation all the way from outsourced suppliers to product delivery.”

Read more in the full article here.


  1. Of course, another interpretation for full availability would be demand is dropping off. I doubt that’s the case, given Cook’s operational prowess, however, and the stage is being set for another blowout holiday quarter.

  2. I can’t believe all the positive apple press these days! What a change from the hell that was this past spring and summer when the bears and haters had the run of the roost. Negative apple press must not get the hits it used to – otherwise desperate journalists would still be playing the apple-bashing game.

    1. The hits keep on coming, never fear. I believe the temporary reversal of tone merely keeps Apple in the headlines whilst saving face for the writers, who realised their duplicity had become too evident; and who in any event were ignored by actual consumers giving the lie to their claims of a declining Apple.

  3. Apple does not have an operational advantage over its main rival, Samsung. In fact, Samsung would appear to have a much greater advantage over Apple because Samsung has its own manufacturing capabilities which Apple doesn’t have and apparently they are very good at what they do. Apple seems unable to ditch Samsung completely because they are so good at what they do.

    Apart from Samsung, Apple would seem to have a greater operational advantage over 90% of the tech industry but Apple really isn’t taking full advantage of what they have because they’re only going after the high-end of all their products while Samsung is going after low-, mid- and high-end with all their products.

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