|Founded||Cupertino, California, U.S.
(April 1, 1976 )
|Headquarters||Apple Campus, Cupertino, California, U.S.|
Number of locations
|437 Apple retail stores in 15 countries (October 2014)|
|Revenue||US$ 182.795 billion (2014)|
|US$ 52.503 billion (2014)|
|US$ 39.510 billion (2014)|
|Total assets||US$ 231.839 billion (2014)|
|Total equity||US$ 111.547 billion (2014)|
Number of employees
Apple Inc. is an American multinational corporation headquartered in Cupertino, California, that designs, develops, and sells consumer electronics, computer software, online services, and personal computers. Its best-known hardware products are the Mac line of computers, the iPod media player, the iPhone smartphone, and the iPad tablet computer. Its online services include iCloud, iTunes Store, and App Store. Apple's consumer software includes the OS X and iOS operating systems, the iTunes media browser, the Safari web browser, and the iLife and iWork creativity and productivity suites.
Apple was founded by Steve Jobs, Steve Wozniak, and Ronald Wayne on April 1, 1976, to develop and sell personal computers. It was incorporated as Apple Computer, Inc. on January 3, 1977, and was renamed as Apple Inc. on January 9, 2007, to reflect its shifted focus towards consumer electronics.
Apple is the world's second-largest information technology company by revenue after Samsung Electronics, and the world's third-largest mobile phone maker. On November 25, 2014, in addition to being the largest publicly traded corporation in the world by market capitalization, Apple became the first U.S. company to be valued at over $700B. As of 2014, Apple employs 72,800 permanent full-time employees, maintains 437 retail stores in fifteen countries, and operates the online Apple Store and iTunes Store, the latter of which is the world's largest music retailer.
Apple's worldwide annual revenue in 2014 totaled US$182 billion (FY end October 2014). Apple enjoys a high level of brand loyalty and, according to the 2014 edition of the Interbrand Best Global Brands report, is the world's most valuable brand with a valuation of $118.9 billion. By the end of 2014, the corporation continued to manage significant criticism regarding the labor practices of its contractors, as well as for its environmental and business practices, including the origins of source materials.
Apple Inc quarterly results surpassed Wall Street expectations with record sales of big-screen iPhones in the holiday shopping season and a 70 % rise in China sales, obtaining the largest profit in corporate history to date. The company sold 74.5 million iPhones in its fiscal first quarter ended December 27, while many analysts had expected fewer than 70 million. Revenue rose to $74.6 billion from $57.6 billion a year earlier. Profit of $18 billion was the biggest ever reported by a public company, worldwide, according to S&P analyst Howard Silverblatt. Apple's cash pile is now $178 billion, enough to buy IBM or the equivalent to $556 for every American.
- 1 History
- 2 Products
- 3 Corporate identity
- 4 Corporate affairs
- 5 See also
- 6 References
- 7 Further reading
- 8 External links
1976–80: Founding and incorporation
Apple was established on April 1, 1976, by Steve Jobs, Steve Wozniak and Ronald Wayne to sell the Apple I personal computer kit. The Apple I kits were computers single handedly designed and hand-built by Wozniak and first shown to the public at the Homebrew Computer Club. The Apple I was sold as a motherboard (with CPU, RAM, and basic textual-video chips), which is less than what is now considered a complete personal computer. The Apple I went on sale in July 1976 and was market-priced at $666.66 ($2,763 in 2015 dollars, adjusted for inflation).
Apple was incorporated January 3, 1977, without Wayne, who sold his share of the company back to Jobs and Wozniak for $800. Multimillionaire Mike Markkula provided essential business expertise and funding of $250,000 during the incorporation of Apple. During the first five years of operations, revenues doubled every four months, an average growth rate of 700%.
The Apple II, also invented by Wozniak, was introduced on April 16, 1977, at the first West Coast Computer Faire. It differed from its major rivals, the TRS-80 and Commodore PET, because of its character cell-based color graphics and open architecture. While early Apple II models used ordinary cassette tapes as storage devices, they were superseded by the introduction of a 5 1/4 inch floppy disk drive and interface called the Disk II. The Apple II was chosen to be the desktop platform for the first "killer app" of the business world: VisiCalc, a spreadsheet program. VisiCalc created a business market for the Apple II and gave home users an additional reason to buy an Apple II: compatibility with the office. Before VisiCalc, Apple had been a distant third place competitor to Commodore and Tandy.
By the end of the 1970s, Apple had a staff of computer designers and a production line. The company introduced the Apple III in May 1980 in an attempt to compete with IBM and Microsoft in the business and corporate computing market. Jobs and several Apple employees, including Jef Raskin, visited Xerox PARC in December 1979 to see the Xerox Alto. Xerox granted Apple engineers three days of access to the PARC facilities in return for the option to buy 100,000 shares (800,000 split-adjusted shares) of Apple at the pre-IPO price of $10 a share. Jobs was immediately convinced that all future computers would use a graphical user interface (GUI), and development of a GUI began for the Apple Lisa.
On December 12, 1980, Apple went public at $22 per share, generating more capital than any IPO since Ford Motor Company in 1956 and instantly creating more millionaires (about 300) than any company in history.
1981–89: Success with Macintosh
Apple began working on the Apple Lisa in 1978. In 1982, Jobs was pushed from the Lisa team due to infighting. Jobs took over Jef Raskin's low-cost-computer project, the Macintosh. A race broke out between the Lisa team and the Macintosh team over which product would ship first. Lisa won the race in 1983 and became the first personal computer sold to the public with a GUI, but was a commercial failure due to its high price tag and limited software titles.
In 1984, Apple launched the Macintosh. It was the first personal computer to be sold without a programming language at all. Its debut was announced by the now famous $1.5 million television commercial "1984". It was directed by Ridley Scott and first aired during the third quarter of Super Bowl XVIII on January 22, 1984. The commercial is now hailed as a watershed event for Apple's success and a "masterpiece".
The Macintosh initially sold well, but follow-up sales were not strong due to its high price and limited range of software titles. The machine's fortunes changed with the introduction of the LaserWriter, the first PostScript laser printer to be sold at a reasonable price, and PageMaker, an early desktop publishing package. It has been suggested that the combination of these three products was responsible for the creation of the desktop publishing market. The Macintosh was particularly powerful in the desktop publishing market due to its advanced graphics capabilities, which had necessarily been built in to create the intuitive Macintosh GUI.
In 1985 a power struggle developed between Jobs and CEO John Sculley, who had been hired two years earlier. The Apple board of directors instructed Sculley to "contain" Jobs and limit his ability to launch expensive forays into untested products. Rather than submit to Sculley's direction, Jobs attempted to oust him from his leadership role at Apple. Sculley found out that Jobs had been attempting to organize a coup and called a board meeting at which Apple's board of directors sided with Sculley and removed Jobs from his managerial duties. Jobs resigned from Apple and founded NeXT Inc. the same year.
The Macintosh Portable was introduced in 1989 and was designed to be just as powerful as a desktop Macintosh, but weighed 7.5 kilograms (17 lb) with a 12-hour battery life. After the Macintosh Portable, Apple introduced the PowerBook in 1991. The same year, Apple introduced System 7, a major upgrade to the operating system which added color to the interface and introduced new networking capabilities. It remained the architectural basis for Mac OS until 2001. The success of the PowerBook and other products brought increasing revenue. For some time, Apple was doing incredibly well, introducing fresh new products and generating increasing profits in the process. The magazine MacAddict named the period between 1989 and 1991 as the "first golden age" of the Macintosh.
1990–99: Decline, restructuring, acquisitions
Apple believed the Apple II series was too expensive to produce and took away sales from the low-end Macintosh. In 1990, Apple released the Macintosh LC, which featured a single expansion slot for the Apple IIe Card to help migrate Apple II users to the Macintosh platform. Apple stopped selling the Apple IIe in 1993. Following the success of the Macintosh LC, Apple introduced the Centris line, a low-end Quadra, and the ill-fated Performa line. Consumers ended up confused because they did not understand the difference between models. Apple experimented with a number of other unsuccessful consumer targeted products during the 90's, including digital cameras, portable CD audio players, speakers, video consoles, and TV appliances. Enormous resources were also invested in the problem-plagued Newton division based on John Sculley's unrealistic market forecasts. Ultimately, none of these products helped and Apple's market share and stock prices continued to slide.
Microsoft continued to gain market share with Windows by focusing on delivering software to cheap commodity personal computers while Apple was delivering a richly engineered but expensive experience. Apple relied on high profit margins and never developed a clear response. Instead, they sued Microsoft for using a graphical user interface similar to the Apple Lisa in Apple Computer, Inc. v. Microsoft Corporation. The lawsuit dragged on for years before it was finally dismissed. At the same time, a series of major product flops and missed deadlines sullied Apple's reputation and Sculley was replaced as CEO by Michael Spindler.
By the early 1990s, Apple was developing alternative platforms to the Macintosh, such as the A/UX. Apple had also begun to experiment with providing a Mac-only online portal which they called eWorld, which was developed in collaboration with America Online and designed as a Mac-friendly alternative to other online services such as CompuServe. The Macintosh platform itself was becoming outdated because it was not built for multitasking and because several important software routines were programmed directly into the hardware. In addition, Apple was facing competition from OS/2 and UNIX vendors such as Sun Microsystems. The Macintosh would need to be replaced by a new platform or reworked to run on more powerful hardware.
In 1994, Apple allied with IBM and Motorola in the AIM alliance with the goal of creating a new computing platform (the PowerPC Reference Platform), which would use IBM and Motorola hardware coupled with Apple software. The AIM alliance hoped that PReP's performance and Apple's software would leave the PC far behind and thus counter Microsoft. The same year, Apple introduced the Power Macintosh, the first of many Apple computers to use Motorola's PowerPC processor.
In 1996, Michael Spindler was replaced by Gil Amelio as CEO. Gil Amelio made many changes at Apple, including extensive layoffs. After numerous failed attempts to improve Mac OS, first with the Taligent project and later with Copland and Gershwin, Amelio chose to purchase NeXT and its NeXTSTEP operating system and bring Steve Jobs back to Apple as an advisor. On July 9, 1997, Amelio was ousted by the board of directors after overseeing a three-year record-low stock price and crippling financial losses. Jobs acted as the interim CEO and began restructuring the company's product line; it was during this period that Jobs identified Jonathan Ive's design talent, and the pair worked collaboratively to rebuild Apple's status.
At the 1997 Macworld Expo, Jobs announced that Apple would join Microsoft to release new versions of Microsoft Office for the Macintosh, and that Microsoft had made a $150 million investment in non-voting Apple stock. On November 10, 1997, Apple introduced the Apple Online Store, which was tied to a new build-to-order manufacturing strategy. On August 15, 1998, Apple introduced a new all-in-one computer reminiscent of the Macintosh 128K: the iMac. The iMac design team was led by Ive, who would later design the iPod and the iPhone. The iMac featured modern technology and a unique design, and sold almost 800,000 units in its first five months.
During this period,[when?] Apple completed numerous acquisitions to create a portfolio of digital production software for both professionals and consumers. In 1998, Apple purchased Macromedia's Key Grip software project, signaling an expansion into the digital video editing market. The sale was an outcome of Macromedia's decision to solely focus upon web development software. The product, still unfinished at the time of the sale, was renamed "Final Cut Pro" when it was launched on the retail market in April 1999. The development of Key Grip also led to Apple's release of the consumer video-editing product iMovie in October 1999. Next, Apple successfully acquired the German company Astarte, which had developed DVD authoring technology, as well as Astarte's corresponding products and engineering team in April 2000. Astarte's digital tool DVDirector was subsequently transformed into the professional-oriented DVD Studio Pro software product. Apple then employed the same technology to create iDVD for the consumer market. In 2002, Apple purchased Nothing Real for their advanced digital compositing application Shake, as well as Emagic for the music productivity application Logic. The purchase of Emagic made Apple the first computer manufacturer to own a music software company. The acquisition was followed by the development of Apple's consumer-level GarageBand application. The release of iPhoto in the same year completed the iLife suite.
2000–06: Return to profitability
Mac OS X, based on NeXT's OPENSTEP and BSD Unix, was released on March 24, 2001 after several years of development. Aimed at consumers and professionals alike, Mac OS X aimed to combine the stability, reliability and security of Unix with the ease of use afforded by an overhauled user interface. To aid users in migrating from Mac OS 9, the new operating system allowed the use of OS 9 applications within Mac OS X as the Classic environment. This meant that users were able to continue running their old applications.
On May 19, 2001, Apple opened the first official Apple Retail Stores in Virginia and California. On October 23 of the same year, Apple debuted the iPod portable digital audio player. The product, which was first sold on November 10, 2001, was phenomenally successful with over 100 million units sold within six years. In 2003, Apple's iTunes Store was introduced. The service offered online music downloads for $0.99 a song and integration with the iPod. The iTunes store quickly became the market leader in online music services, with over 5 billion downloads by June 19, 2008.
At the Worldwide Developers Conference keynote address on June 6, 2005, Jobs announced that Apple would begin producing Intel-based Mac computers in 2006. On January 10, 2006, the new MacBook Pro and iMac became the first Apple computers to use Intel's Core Duo CPU. By August 7, 2006, Apple made the transition to Intel chips for the entire Mac product line—over one year sooner than announced. The Power Mac, iBook and PowerBook brands were retired during the transition; the Mac Pro, MacBook, and MacBook Pro became their respective successors. On April 29, 2009, The Wall Street Journal reported that Apple was building its own team of engineers to design microchips. Apple also introduced Boot Camp in 2006 to help users install Windows XP or Windows Vista on their Intel Macs alongside Mac OS X.
Apple's success during this period was evident in its stock price. Between early 2003 and 2006, the price of Apple's stock increased more than tenfold, from around $6 per share (split-adjusted) to over $80. In January 2006, Apple's market cap surpassed that of Dell. Nine years prior, Dell's CEO Michael Dell said that if he ran Apple he would "shut it down and give the money back to the shareholders." Although Apple's market share in computers had grown, it remained far behind competitors using Microsoft Windows, accounting for about 8% of desktops and laptops in the US.
Since 2001, Apple's design team has progressively abandoned the use of translucent colored plastics first used in the iMac G3. This design change began with the titanium-made PowerBook and was followed by the iBook's white polycarbonate structure and the flat-panel iMac.
2007–10: Success with mobile devices
During his keynote speech at the Macworld Expo on January 9, 2007, Jobs announced that Apple Computer, Inc. would from that point on be known as "Apple Inc.", because the company had shifted its emphasis from computers to mobile electronic devices. This event also saw the announcement of the iPhone and the Apple TV. The following day, Apple shares hit $97.80, an all-time high at that point. In May, Apple's share price passed the $100 mark. Apple would achieve widespread success with its iPhone, iPod Touch and iPad products, which introduced innovations in mobile phones, portable music players and personal computers respectively. Furthermore, by early 2007, 800,000 Final Cut Pro users were registered.
In an article posted on Apple's website on February 6, 2007, Jobs wrote that Apple would be willing to sell music on the iTunes Store without digital rights management (DRM), thereby allowing tracks to be played on third-party players, if record labels would agree to drop the technology. On April 2, 2007, Apple and EMI jointly announced the removal of DRM technology from EMI's catalog in the iTunes Store, effective in May 2007. Other record labels eventually followed suit and Apple published a press release in January 2009 to announce the corresponding changes to the iTunes Store.
In July 2008, Apple launched the App Store to sell third-party applications for the iPhone and iPod Touch. Within a month, the store sold 60 million applications and registered an average daily revenue of $1 million, with Jobs speculating in August 2008 that the App Store could become a billion-dollar business for Apple. By October 2008, Apple was the third-largest mobile handset supplier in the world due to the popularity of the iPhone.
On December 16, 2008, Apple announced that 2009 would be the last year the corporation would attend the Macworld Expo, after more than 20 years of attendance, and that senior vice president of Worldwide Product Marketing Philip Schiller would deliver the 2009 keynote address in lieu of the expected Jobs. The official press release explained that Apple was "scaling back" on trade shows in general, including Macworld Tokyo and the Apple Expo in Paris, France, primarily because the enormous successes of the Apple Retail Stores and website had rendered trade shows a minor promotional channel.
On January 14, 2009, an internal memo from Jobs announced that he would be taking a six-month medical leave of absence from Apple until the end of June 2009 and would spend the time focusing on his health. In the email, Jobs stated that "the curiosity over my personal health continues to be a distraction not only for me and my family, but everyone else at Apple as well," and explained that the break would allow the company "to focus on delivering extraordinary products." Despite Jobs's absence, Apple recorded its best non-holiday quarter (Q1 FY 2009) during the recession with a revenue of $8.16 billion and a profit of $1.21 billion.
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After years of speculation and multiple rumored "leaks", Apple announced a large screen, tablet-like media device known as the iPad on January 27, 2010. The iPad ran the same touch based operating system that the iPhone used, and many iPhone apps were compatible with the iPad. This gave the iPad a large app catalog on launch despite very little development time before the release. Later that year on April 3, 2010, the iPad was launched in the US. It sold more than 300,000 units on its first day, and 500,000 by the end of the first week. In May of the same year, Apple's market cap exceeded that of competitor Microsoft for the first time since 1989.
Apple also released the iPhone 4,[when?] which introduced video calling, multitasking, and a new uninsulated stainless steel design that acted as the phone's antenna. Later that year Apple again refreshed its iPod line of MP3 players by introducing a multi-touch iPod Nano, an iPod Touch with FaceTime, and an iPod Shuffle that brought back the buttons of earlier generations. Additionally, on October 20, Apple updated their MacBook Air laptop, iLife suite of applications, and unveiled Mac OS X Lion, the last version with the name Mac OS X.
In October 2010, Apple shares hit an all-time high, eclipsing $300.
2011–12: Steve Jobs's death
On January 6, 2011, the company opened their Mac App Store, a digital software distribution platform similar to the existing iOS App Store. Alongside peer entities such as Atari and Cisco Systems, Apple was featured in the documentary Something Ventured which premiered in 2011 and explored the three-decade era that led to the establishment and dominance of Silicon Valley.
On January 17, 2011, Jobs announced in an internal Apple memo that he would take another medical leave of absence, for an indefinite period, to allow him to focus on his health. Chief operating officer Tim Cook assumed Jobs's day-to-day operations at Apple, although Jobs would still remain "involved in major strategic decisions for the company." Apple became the most valuable consumer-facing brand in the world. In June 2011, Jobs surprisingly took the stage and unveiled iCloud, an online storage and syncing service for music, photos, files and software which replaced MobileMe, Apple's previous attempt at content syncing.
This would be the last product launch Jobs would attend before his death. It has been argued that Apple has achieved such efficiency in its supply chain that the company operates as a monopsony (one buyer, many sellers) and can dictate terms to its suppliers. In July 2011, due to the American debt-ceiling crisis, Apple's financial reserves were briefly larger than those of the U.S. Government.
On August 24, 2011, Jobs resigned his position as CEO of Apple. He was replaced by Tim Cook and Jobs became Apple's chairman. Prior to this, Apple did not have a chairman and instead had two co-lead directors, Andrea Jung and Arthur D. Levinson, who continued with those titles until Levinson became Chairman of the Board in November. On October 5, 2011, Apple announced that Jobs had died, marking the end of an era for Apple Inc. The first major announcement by Apple following Job's passing occurred on January 19, 2012, when Apple's Phil Schiller introduced iBooks Textbooks for iOS and iBook Author for Mac OS X in New York City. Jobs had stated in his biography that he wanted to reinvent the textbook industry and education.
From 2011-2012, Apple released the iPhone 4S and iPhone 5, which featured improved cameras, an "intelligent software assistant" named Siri, and cloud-sourced data with iCloud; the third and fourth generation iPads, which featured Retina displays; and the iPad Mini, which featured a 7.9-inch screen in contrast to the iPad's 9.7-inch screen. These launches were successful, with the iPhone 5 (released September 21, 2012) becoming Apple's biggest iPhone launch with over 2 million pre-orders and sales of 3 million iPads in three days following the launch of the iPad Mini and fourth generation iPad (released November 3, 2012). Apple also released a third-generation 13-inch MacBook Pro with a Retina display and new iMac and Mac Mini computers.
On October 29, 2011, Apple purchased C3 Technologies, a mapping company, for $240 million, becoming the third mapping company Apple has purchased. On January 10, 2012, Apple paid $500 million to acquire Anobit, an Israeli hardware company that developed and supplied a proprietary memory signal processing technology that improved the performance of the flash-memory used in iPhones and iPads. On July 24, 2012, during a conference call with investors, Tim Cook said that he loved India, but that Apple was going to expect larger opportunities outside of India. Cook cited the reason as the 30% sourcing requirement from India.[clarification needed]
On August 20, 2012, Apple's rising stock rose the company's value to a world-record $624 billion. This beat the non-inflation-adjusted record for market capitalization set by Microsoft in 1999. On August 24, 2012, a US jury ruled that Samsung should pay Apple $1.05 billion (£665m) in damages in an intellectual property lawsuit. Samsung appealed the damages award, which the Court reduced by $450 million. The Court further granted Samsung's request for a new trial. On November 10, 2012, Apple confirmed a global settlement that would dismiss all lawsuits between Apple and HTC up to that date, in favor of a ten-year license agreement for current and future patents between the two companies. It is predicted that Apple will make $280 million a year from this deal with HTC.
2013–present: Acquisitions and expansion
A previously confidential email written by Jobs a year before his death, was presented During the proceedings of the Apple Inc. v. Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd. lawsuits and became publicly available in early April 2014. With a subject line that reads "Top 100 – A," the email was sent only to the company's 100 most senior employees and outlines Jobs's vision of Apple Inc.'s future under 10 subheadings. Notably, Jobs declares a "Holy War with Google" for 2011 and schedules a "new campus" for 2015.
In March 2013, Apple filed a patent for an augmented reality (AR) system that can identify objects in a live video stream and present information corresponding to these objects through a computer-generated information layer overlaid on top of the real-world image. Later in 2013, Apple acquired Embark Inc., a small Silicon Valley-based mapping company that builds free transit apps to help smartphone users navigate public transportation in U.S. cities, and PrimeSense, an Israeli 3D sensing company based in Tel Aviv. In December 2013, Apple Inc. purchased social analytics firm Topsy. Topsy is one of a small number of firms with real-time access to the messages that appear on Twitter and can "do real-time analysis of the trends and discussions happening on Twitter.” The company also made several high profile hiring decisions in 2013. On July 2, 2013, Apple recruited Paul Deneve, Belgian President and CEO of Yves Saint Laurent as a vice president reporting directly to Tim Cook. A mid-October 2013 announcement revealed that Burberry executive Angela Ahrendts will commence as a senior vice president at Apple in mid-2014. Ahrendts oversaw Burberry's digital strategy for almost eight years and, during her tenure, sales increased to about US$3.2 billion and shares gained more than threefold.
At the Worldwide Developer's Conference on June 10, 2013, Apple announced the seventh iOS operating system alongside OS X Mavericks, the tenth version of Mac OS X, and a new Internet radio service called iTunes Radio. iTunes Radio, iOS 7 and OS X Mavericks were released fall 2013. On December 6, 2013, Apple Inc. launched iBeacon across its 254 U.S. retail stores. Using Bluetooth wireless technology, iBeacon senses the user's exact location within the Apple store and sends the user messages about products, events and other information, tailored to the user's location.
Alongside Google vice-president Vint Cerf and AT&T CEO Randall Stephenson, Cook attended a closed-door summit held by President Obama on August 8, 2013, in regard to government surveillance and the Internet in the wake of the Edward Snowden NSA incident. On February 4, 2014, Cook met with Abdullah Gül, the President of Turkey, in Ankara to discuss the company's involvement in the Fatih project. Cook also confirmed that Turkey's first Apple Retail Store would be opened in Istanbul in April 2014.
An anonymous Apple employee revealed to the Bloomberg media publication that the opening of a Tokyo, Japan store is planned for 2014. The construction of the store will be completed in February 2014, but as of August 29, 2013 Apple's Tokyo-based spokesman has not made any comments to the media. A Japanese analyst has stated, "For Apple, the Japanese market is appealing in terms of quantity and price. There is room to expand tablet sales and a possibility the Japanese market expands if Apple’s mobile carrier partners increase. On October 1, 2013, Apple India executives unveiled a plan to expand further into the Indian market, following Cook's acknowledgment of the country in July 2013 when sales results showed that iPhone sales in India grew 400% during the second quarter of 2013.
Apple Inc. reported that the company sold 51 million iPhones in the Q1 of 2014 (an all-time quarterly record), compared to 47.8 million in the year-ago quarter. Apple also sold 26 million iPads during the quarter, also an all-time quarterly record, compared to 22.9 million in the year-ago quarter. The Company sold 4.8 million Macs, compared to 4.1 million in the year-ago quarter. On May 28, 2014, Apple confirmed its intent to acquire Dr. Dre and Jimmy Iovine's audio company Beats Electronics—producer of the Beats by Dr. Dre line of headphones and speaker products, and operator of the music streaming service Beats Music—for $3 billion, and to sell their products through Apple's retail outlets and resellers. Iovine felt that Beats had always "belonged" with Apple, as the company modeled itself after Apple's "unmatched ability to marry culture and technology." In August 2014 an Apple representative confirmed to the media that Anand Lal Shimpi, editor and publisher of the AnandTech website, had been recruited by Apple without elaborating on Lal Shimpi's role.
Apple announced the Apple Watch on September 9, 2014. It features a digital crown that enables efficient scroll, zoom and navigation functionality in a very small form factor. The device is a communication portal to a nearby iPhone for messaging, telephone calls, and engaging Siri, Apple's personal assistant. The watch incorporates a Retina display for ultra-high clarity, force touch technology to sense the difference between a tap and a press, medical sensors to monitor the health of the wearer, a Taptic Engine to discreetly get the wearer's attention, and supports Apple Pay. The product will arrive in the spring of 2015 in three models - standard, sport, and an elegant 18-karat gold special edition.
- MacBook Air: Consumer ultra-thin, ultra-portable notebook, introduced in 2008.
- MacBook Pro: Professional notebook, introduced in 2006.
- Mac Mini: Consumer sub-desktop computer and server, introduced in 2005.
- iMac: Consumer all-in one desktop computer, introduced in 1998.
- Mac Pro: Workstation desktop computer, introduced in 2006.
Apple sells a variety of computer accessories for Macs, including Thunderbolt Display, Magic Mouse, Magic Trackpad, Wireless Keyboard, Battery Charger, the AirPort wireless networking products, and Time Capsule.
On January 27, 2010, Apple introduced their much-anticipated media tablet, the iPad, which runs a modified version of iOS. It offers multi-touch interaction with multimedia formats including newspapers, ebooks, photos, videos, music, word processing documents, video games, and most existing iPhone apps. It also includes a mobile version of Safari for web browsing, as well as access to the App Store, iTunes Library, iBookstore, Contacts, and Notes. Content is downloadable via Wi-Fi and optional 3G service or synced through the user's computer. AT&T was initially the sole U.S. provider of 3G wireless access for the iPad.
On March 2, 2011, Apple introduced the iPad 2, which had a faster processor and a camera on the front and back. It also added support for optional 3G service provided by Verizon in addition to AT&T. The availability of the iPad 2 was initially limited as a result of a devastating earthquake and tsunami in Japan in March 2011. The third-generation iPad was released on March 7, 2012 and marketed as "the new iPad". It added LTE service from AT&T or Verizon, an upgraded A5X processor, and Retina display. The dimensions and form factor remained relatively unchanged, with the new iPad being a fraction thicker and heavier than the previous version and featuring minor positioning changes.
On October 23, 2012, Apple's fourth-generation iPad came out, marketed as the "iPad with Retina display". It added the upgraded A6X processor and replaced the traditional 30-pin dock connector with the all-digital Lightning connector. The iPad Mini was also introduced. It featured a reduced 7.9-inch display and much of the same internal specifications as the iPad 2. On October 22, 2013, Apple introduced the iPad Air and the iPad mini with Retina Display, both featuring a new 64 bit Apple-A7 processor. The iPad Air 2 was unveiled on October 16, 2014. It added better graphics and central processing and a camera burst mode as well as minor updates. The iPad Mini 3 was unveiled at the same time.
On October 23, 2001, Apple introduced the iPod digital music player. Several updated models have since been introduced, and the iPod brand is now the market leader in portable music players by a significant margin. More than 350 million units have shipped as of September 2012[update]. Apple has partnered with Nike to offer the Nike+iPod Sports Kit, enabling runners to synchronize and monitor their runs with iTunes and the Nike+ website.
Apple currently sells three variants of the iPod:
- iPod Shuffle: Ultra-portable digital audio player, currently available in a 2 GB model, introduced in 2005.
- iPod Nano: Portable media player, currently available in a 16 GB model, introduced in 2005. Earlier models featured the traditional iPod click wheel, but the current generation features a multi-touch interface and includes an FM radio and a pedometer.
- iPod Touch: Portable media player that runs iOS and was released on September 12, 2012 and is currently available in 16, 32 and 64 GB models. The current generation features the Apple A5 processor, a Retina display, Siri and dual cameras on the front (1.2 megapixel sensor) and back (5 megapixel iSight). The latter camera supports HD video recording at 1080p.
At the Macworld Conference & Expo in January 2007, Steve Jobs introduced the long-anticipated iPhone, a convergence of an Internet-enabled smartphone and iPod. The first-generation iPhone was released on June 29, 2007 for $499 (4 GB) and $599 (8 GB) with an AT&T contract. On February 5, 2008, it was updated to have 16 GB of memory, in addition to the 8 GB and 4 GB models. It combined a 2.5G quad band GSM and EDGE cellular phone with features found in handheld devices, running scaled-down versions of Apple's Mac OS X (dubbed iPhone OS, later renamed iOS), with various Mac OS X applications such as Safari and Mail. It also includes web-based and Dashboard apps such as Google Maps and Weather. The iPhone features a 3.5-inch (89 mm) touchscreen display, Bluetooth, and Wi-Fi (both "b" and "g").
A second version, the iPhone 3G, was released on July 11, 2008 with a reduced price of $199 for the 8 GB version and $299 for the 16 GB version. This version added support for 3G networking and assisted-GPS navigation. The flat silver back and large antenna square of the original model were eliminated in favor of a glossy, curved black or white back. Software capabilities were improved with the release of the App Store, which provided iPhone-compatible applications to download. On April 24, 2009, the App Store  surpassed one billion downloads. On June 8, 2009, Apple announced the iPhone 3GS. It provided an incremental update to the device, including faster internal components, support for faster 3G speeds, video recording capability, and voice control.
At the Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC) on June 7, 2010, Apple announced the redesigned iPhone 4. It featured a 960x640 display, the Apple A4 processor, a gyroscope for enhanced gaming, a 5MP camera with LED flash, front-facing VGA camera and FaceTime video calling. Shortly after its release, reception issues were discovered by consumers, due to the stainless steel band around the edge of the device, which also serves as the phone's cellular signal and Wi-Fi antenna. The issue was corrected by a "Bumper Case" distributed by Apple for free to all owners for a few months. In June 2011, Apple overtook Nokia to become the world's biggest smartphone maker by volume. On October 4, 2011, Apple unveiled the iPhone 4S, which was first released on October 14, 2011. It features the Apple A5 processor and Siri voice assistant technology, the latter of which Apple had acquired in 2010. It also features an updated 8MP camera with new optics. Apple sold 4 million iPhone 4S phones in the first three days of availability.
On September 12, 2012, Apple introduced the iPhone 5. It added a 4-inch display, 4G LTE connectivity, and the upgraded Apple A6 chip, among several other improvements. Two million iPhones were sold in the first twenty-four hours of pre-ordering and over five million handsets were sold in the first three days of its launch. Upon the launch of the iPhone 5S and iPhone 5C, Apple set a new record for first-weekend smartphone sales by selling over nine million devices in the first three days of its launch. The release of the iPhone 5S and 5C was the first time that Apple simultaneously launched two models.
A patent filed in July 2013 revealed the development of a new iPhone battery system that uses location data in combination with data on the user's habits to moderate the handsets power settings accordingly. Apple is working towards a power management system that will provide features such as the ability of the iPhone to estimate the length of time a user will be away from a power source to modify energy usage and a detection function that adjusts the charging rate to best suit the type of power source that is being used.
In a March 2014 interview, Apple designer Jonathan Ive used the iPhone as an example of Apple's ethos of creating high-quality, life-changing products. He explained that the phones are comparatively expensive due to the intensive effort that is used to make them:
We don’t take so long and make the way we make for fiscal reasons ... Quite the reverse. The body is made from a single piece of machined aluminium ... The whole thing is polished first to a mirror finish and then is very finely textured, except for the Apple logo. The chamfers [smoothed-off edges] are cut with diamond-tipped cutters. The cutters don’t usually last very long, so we had to figure out a way of mass-manufacturing long-lasting ones. The camera cover is sapphire crystal. Look at the details around the sim-card slot. It’s extraordinary!
At the 2007 Macworld conference, Jobs demonstrated the Apple TV (previously known as the iTV), a set-top video device intended to bridge the sale of content from iTunes with high-definition televisions. The device links up to a user's TV and syncs, either via Wi-Fi or a wired network, with one computer's iTunes library and streams content from an additional four. The Apple TV originally incorporated a 40 GB hard drive for storage, included outputs for HDMI and component video, and played video at a maximum resolution of 720p. On May 31, 2007, a 160 GB drive was released alongside the existing 40 GB model. A software update released on January 15, 2008 allowed media to be purchased directly from the Apple TV.
In September 2009, Apple discontinued the original 40 GB Apple TV and now continues to produce and sell the 160 GB Apple TV. On September 1, 2010, Apple released a completely redesigned Apple TV. The new device is 1/4 the size, runs quieter, and replaces the need for a hard drive with media streaming from any iTunes library on the network along with 8 GB of flash memory to cache media downloaded. Like the iPad and the iPhone, Apple TV runs on an A4 processor. The memory included in the device is half of that in the iPhone 4 at 256 MB; the same as the iPad, iPhone 3GS, third and fourth-generation iPod Touch.
It has HDMI out as the only video out source. Features include access to the iTunes Store to rent movies and TV shows (purchasing has been discontinued), streaming from internet video sources, including YouTube and Netflix, and media streaming from an iTunes library. Apple also reduced the price of the device to $99. A third generation of the device was introduced at an Apple event on March 7, 2012, with new features such as higher resolution (1080p) and a new user interface.
The Apple Watch smartwatch was launched by Cook on September 9, 2014, and is scheduled to be released in early 2015. The wearable device consists of fitness-tracking capabilities that are similar to Fitbit, and must be used in combination with an iPhone to work (only the iPhone 5, or later models, are compatible with the Apple Watch).
Apple develops its own operating system to run on Macs, OS X, the latest version being OS X Yosemite (version 10.10). Apple also independently develops computer software titles for its OS X operating system. Much of the software Apple develops is bundled with its computers. An example of this is the consumer-oriented iLife software package that bundles iMovie, iPhoto and GarageBand. For presentation, page layout and word processing, iWork is available, which includes Keynote, Pages, and Numbers. iTunes, QuickTime media player, and Software Update are available as free downloads for both OS X and Windows.
Apple also offers a range of professional software titles. Their range of server software includes the operating system OS X Server; Apple Remote Desktop, a remote systems management application; and Xsan, a Storage Area Network file system. For the professional creative market, there is Aperture for professional RAW-format photo processing; Final Cut Pro, a video production suite; Logic Pro, a comprehensive music toolkit; and Motion, an advanced effects composition program.
Apple also offers online services with iCloud, which provides cloud storage and syncing for a wide range of data, including email, contacts, calendars, photos and documents. It also offers iOS device backup, and is able to integrate directly with third-party apps for even greater functionality. iCloud is the fourth generation of online services provided by Apple, and was preceded by MobileMe, .Mac and iTools, all which met varying degrees of success.
Apple's first logo, designed by Ron Wayne, depicts Sir Isaac Newton sitting under an apple tree. It was almost immediately replaced by Rob Janoff's "rainbow Apple", the now-familiar rainbow-colored silhouette of an apple with a bite taken out of it. Janoff presented Jobs with several different monochromatic themes for the "bitten" logo, and Jobs immediately took a liking to it. However, Jobs insisted that the logo be colorized to humanize the company. The logo was designed with a bite so that it would not be confused with a cherry. The colored stripes were conceived to make the logo more accessible, and to represent the fact the Apple II could generate graphics in color. This logo is often erroneously referred to as a tribute to Alan Turing, with the bite mark a reference to his method of suicide. Both Janoff and Apple deny any homage to Turing in the design of the logo.
On August 27, 1999 (the year following the introduction of the iMac G3), Apple officially dropped the rainbow scheme and began to use monochromatic logos nearly identical in shape to the previous rainbow incarnation. An Aqua-themed version of the monochrome logo was used from 1999 to 2003, and a glass-themed version was used from 2007 to 2013.
Steve Jobs and Steve Wozniak were Beatles fans, but Apple Inc. had name and logo trademark issues with Apple Corps Ltd., a multimedia company started by the Beatles in 1967. This resulted in a series of lawsuits and tension between the two companies. These issues ended with settling of their most recent lawsuit in 2007.
Apple's first slogan, "Byte into an Apple", was coined in the late 1970s. From 1997 to 2002, the slogan "Think Different" was used in advertising campaigns, and is still closely associated with Apple. Apple also has slogans for specific product lines — for example, "iThink, therefore iMac" was used in 1998 to promote the iMac, and "Say hello to iPhone" has been used in iPhone advertisements. "Hello" was also used to introduce the original Macintosh, Newton, iMac ("hello (again)"), and iPod.
From the introduction of the Macintosh in 1984 with the 1984 Super Bowl commercial to the more modern 'Get a Mac' adverts, Apple has been recognized in for its efforts towards effective advertising and marketing for its products. However, claims made by later campaigns were criticized, particularly the 2005 Power Mac ads. Apple's product commercials gained a lot of attention as a result of their eye-popping graphics and catchy tunes. Musicians who benefited from an improved profile as a result of their songs being included on Apple commercials include Canadian singer Feist with the song "1234" and Yael Naïm with the song "New Soul".
Apple's high level of brand loyalty is considered unusual for any product. Apple evangelists were actively engaged by the company at one time, but this was after the phenomenon had already been firmly established. Apple evangelist Guy Kawasaki has called the brand fanaticism "something that was stumbled upon," while Ive explained in 2014 that "People have an incredibly personal relationship" with Apple's products. Apple Store openings can draw crowds of thousands, with some waiting in line as much as a day before the opening or flying in from other countries for the event. The opening of the New York City Fifth Avenue "Cube" store had a line half a mile long; a few Mac fans used the setting to propose marriage. The line for the Ginza opening in Tokyo was estimated to include thousands of people and exceeded eight city blocks.
Fortune magazine named Apple the most admired company in the United States in 2008, and in the world from 2008 to 2012. On September 30, 2013, Apple surpassed Coca-Cola to become the world's most valuable brand in the Omnicom Group's "Best Global Brands" report. Boston Consulting Group has ranked Apple as the world's most innovative brand every year since 2005.
John Sculley told The Guardian newspaper in 1997: "People talk about technology, but Apple was a marketing company. It was the marketing company of the decade." Research in 2002 by NetRatings indicate that the average Apple consumer was usually more affluent and better educated than other PC company consumers. The research indicated that this correlation could stem from the fact that on average Apple Inc. products were more expensive than other PC products.
In response to a query about the devotion of loyal Apple consumers, Jonathon Ive responded:
What people are responding to is much bigger than the object. They are responding to something rare—a group of people who do more than simply make something work, they make the very best products they possibly can. It’s a demonstration against thoughtlessness and carelessness.
The Apple website home page has been used to commemorate, or pay tribute to, milestones and events outside of Apple's product offerings:
- 2014: Robin Williams
- 2013: Nelson Mandela
- 2011: Steve Jobs
- 2010: Jerome B. York (board member)
- 2005: Rosa Parks
- 2003: Gregory Hines
- 2001: George Harrison
Apple Inc.'s world corporate headquarters are located in the middle of Silicon Valley, at 1–6 Infinite Loop, Cupertino, California. This Apple campus has six buildings that total 850,000 square feet (79,000 m2) and was built in 1993 by Sobrato Development Cos.
In 2006, Apple announced its intention to build a second campus in Cupertino about 1 mile (1.6 km) east of the current campus and next to Interstate 280. The new campus building will be designed by Norman Foster. The Cupertino City Council approved the proposed "spaceship" design campus on October 15, 2013, after a 2011 presentation by Jobs detailing the architectural design of the new building and its environs. The new campus is planned to house up to 13,000 employees in one central, four-storied, circular building surrounded by extensive landscape. It will feature a café with room for 3,000 sitting people and parking underground as well as in a parking structure. The 2.8 million square foot facility will also include Jobs's original designs for a fitness center and a corporate auditorium.
Apple's headquarters for Europe, the Middle East and Africa (EMEA) are located in Cork in the south of Ireland. The facility, which opened in 1980, was Apple's first location outside of the United States. Apple Sales International, which deals with all of Apple's international sales outside of the USA, is located at Apple's campus in Cork along with Apple Distribution International, which similarly deals with Apple's international distribution network. On April 20, 2012, Apple added 500 new jobs at its European headquarters, increasing the total workforce from around 2,800 to 3,300 employees. The company will build a new office block on its Hollyhill Campus to accommodate the additional staff.
Apple was one of several highly successful companies founded in the 1970s that bucked the traditional notions of corporate culture. Jobs often walked around the office barefoot even after Apple became a Fortune 500 company. By the time of the "1984" television commercial, Apple's informal culture had become a key trait that differentiated it from its competitors. According to a 2011 report in Fortune, this has resulted in a corporate culture more akin to a startup rather than a multinational corporation.
As the company has grown and been led by a series of differently opinionated chief executives, it has arguably lost some of its original character. Nonetheless, it has maintained a reputation for fostering individuality and excellence that reliably attracts talented workers, particularly after Jobs returned to the company. Numerous Apple employees have stated that projects without Jobs's involvement often take longer than projects with it. To recognize the best of its employees, Apple created the Apple Fellows program which awards individuals who make extraordinary technical or leadership contributions to personal computing while at the company. The Apple Fellowship has so far been awarded to individuals including Bill Atkinson, Steve Capps, Rod Holt, Alan Kay, Guy Kawasaki, Al Alcorn, Don Norman, Rich Page, and Steve Wozniak.
At Apple, employees are specialists who are not exposed to functions outside their area of expertise. Jobs saw this as a means of having "best-in-class" employees in every role. For instance, Ron Johnson—Senior Vice President of Retail Operations until November 1, 2011—was responsible for site selection, in-store service, and store layout, yet had no control of the inventory in his stores (this was done by Cook, who had a background in supply-chain management). Apple is also known for strictly enforcing accountability. Each project has a "directly responsible individual," or "DRI" in Apple jargon. As an example, when iOS senior vice president Scott Forstall refused to sign Apple's official apology for numerous errors in the redesigned Maps app, he was forced to resign. Unlike other major U.S. companies Apple provides a relatively simple compensation policy for executives that does not include perks enjoyed by other CEOs like country club fees or private use of company aircraft. The company typically grants stock options to executives every other year.
In 1999 Apple retained Eight Inc. as a strategic retail design partner and began creating the Apple retail stores. Tim Kobe of Eight Inc. prepared an "Apple Retail" white paper for Jobs, outlining the ability of separate Apple retail stores to directly drive the Apple brand experience—Kobe used their recently completed work with The North Face and Nike as a basis for the white paper. The first two Apple Stores opened on May 19, 2001 in Tysons Corner, Virginia, and Glendale, California. More than 7,700 people visited Apple’s first two stores in the opening weekend, spending a total of US$599,000. As of June 2014, Apple maintains 425 retail stores in fourteen countries. In addition to Apple products, the stores sell third-party products like software titles, digital cameras, camcorders and handheld organizers.
A media article published in July 2013 provided details about Apple's "At-Home Apple Advisors" customer support program that serves as the corporation's call center. The advisors are employed within the U.S. and work remotely after undergoing a four-week training program and testing period. The advisors earn between US$9 and $12 per hour and receive intensive management to ensure a high quality of customer support.
The company's manufacturing, procurement and logistics enable it to execute massive product launches without having to maintain large, profit-sapping inventories. In 2011, Apple's profit margins were 40 percent, compared with between 10 and 20 percent for most other hardware companies. Cook's catchphrase to describe his focus on the company's operational arm is: “Nobody wants to buy sour milk”.
During the Mac's early history Apple generally refused to adopt prevailing industry standards for hardware, instead creating their own. This trend was largely reversed in the late 1990s, beginning with Apple's adoption of the PCI bus in the 7500/8500/9500 Power Macs. Apple has since adopted USB, AGP, HyperTransport, Wi-Fi, and other industry standards in its computers. FireWire is an Apple-originated standard that was widely adopted across the industry after it was standardized as IEEE 1394.
The company advertised its products as being made in America until the late 1990s; however, as a result of outsourcing initiatives in the 2000s, almost all of its manufacturing is now handled abroad. According to a report by the New York Times, Apple insiders "believe the vast scale of overseas factories as well as the flexibility, diligence and industrial skills of foreign workers have so outpaced their American counterparts that “Made in the U.S.A.” is no longer a viable option for most Apple products".
In 2006, the Mail on Sunday reported on the working conditions of the Chinese factories where contract manufacturers Foxconn and Inventec produced the iPod. The article stated that one complex of factories that assembled the iPod and other items had over 200,000 workers living and working within it. Employees regularly worked more than 60 hours per week and made around $100 per month. A little over half of the workers' earnings was required to pay for rent and food from the company.
Apple immediately launched an investigation after the 2006 media report, and worked with their manufacturers to ensure acceptable working conditions. In 2007, Apple started yearly audits of all its suppliers regarding worker's rights, slowly raising standards and pruning suppliers that did not comply. Yearly progress reports have been published since 2008. In 2011, Apple admitted that its suppliers' child labor practices in China had worsened.
The Foxconn suicides occurred between January and November 2010, when 18 Foxconn (Chinese: 富士康) employees attempted suicide, resulting in 14 deaths—the company was the world’s largest contract electronics manufacturer, for clients including Apple, at the time. The suicides drew media attention, and employment practices at Foxconn were investigated by Apple. Apple issued a public statement about the suicides, and company spokesperson Steven Dowling said:
[Apple is] saddened and upset by the recent suicides at Foxconn ... A team from Apple is independently evaluating the steps they are taking to address these tragic events and we will continue our ongoing inspections of the facilities where our products are made.
The statement was released after the results from the company's probe into its suppliers' labor practices were published in early 2010. Foxconn was not specifically named in the report, but Apple identified a series of serious labor violations of labor laws, including Apple's own rules, and some child labor existed in a number of factories. Apple committed to the implementation of changes following the suicides.
Also in 2010, workers in China planned to sue iPhone contractors over poisoning by a cleaner used to clean LCD screens. One worker claimed that he and his coworkers had not been informed of possible occupational illnesses. After a high suicide rate in a Foxconn facility in China making iPads and iPhones, albeit a lower rate than that of China as a whole, workers were forced to sign a legally binding document guaranteeing that they would not kill themselves. Workers in factories producing Apple products have also been exposed to n-hexane, a neurotoxin that is a cheaper alternative than alcohol for cleaning the products.
In 2013, China Labor Watch said it found violations of the law and of Apple's working condition pledges at facilities operated by Pegatron. These violations included discrimination against ethnic minorities and women, withholding of employee pay, excessive work hours, poor living conditions, health and safety problems and pollution.
A 2014 BBC investigation found excessive hours and other problems persisted, despite Apple's promise to reform factory practice after the 2010 Foxconn suicides. The Pegatron factory was once again the subject of review, as reporters gained access to the working conditions inside through recruitment as employees. While the BBC maintained that the experiences of its reporters showed that labor violations were continuing since 2010, Apple publicly disagreed with the BBC and stated: “We are aware of no other company doing as much as Apple to ensure fair and safe working conditions".
In December 2014, the Institute for Global Labour and Human Rights published a report which documented inhumane conditions for the 15,000 workers at a Zhen Ding Technology factory in Shenzhen, China, which serves as a major supplier of circuit boards for Apple's iPhone and iPad. According to the report, workers are pressured into 65 hour work weeks which leaves them so exhausted that they often sleep during lunch breaks. They are also made to reside in "primitive, dark and filthy dorms" where they sleep "on plywood, with six to ten workers in each crowded room." Omnipresent security personnel also routinely harass and beat the workers.
No cold calling agreements in the United States
Following a Greenpeace protest, Apple released a statement on April 17, 2012 committing to ending its use of coal and shifting to 100% clean energy. By 2013 Apple was using 100% renewable energy to power their data centers. Overall, 75% of the company's power came from renewable sources.
In 2010, Climate Counts, a nonprofit organization dedicated to directing consumers toward the greenest companies, gave Apple a score of 52 points out of a possible 100, which puts Apple in their top category "Striding". This was an increase from May 2008, when Climate Counts only gave Apple 11 points out of 100, which placed the company last among electronics companies, at which time Climate Counts also labeled Apple with a "stuck icon", adding that Apple at the time was "a choice to avoid for the climate conscious consumer".
Following further campaigns by Greenpeace, in 2008 Apple became the first laptop manufacturer to eliminate the inclusion of PVC and BFRs in its devices. In June 2007, Apple began replacing the cold cathode fluorescent lamp (CCFL) backlit LCD displays in its computers with mercury-free LED backlit LCD displays and arsenic-free glass, starting with the upgraded MacBook Pro. Apple offers information about emissions, materials, and electrical usage concerning each product. In June 2009, Apple's iPhone 3GS was free of PVC, arsenic, BFRs and had an efficient power adapter. All Apple computers now have mercury free LED backlit displays, arsenic-free glass and lack PVC cables. All Apple computers also have Electronic Product Environmental Assessment Tool (EPEAT) Gold status.
In October 2011, Chinese authorities ordered an Apple supplier to close part of its plant in Suzhou after residents living nearby raised significant environmental concerns.
In November 2011, Apple featured in Greenpeace's Guide to Greener Electronics, which ranks electronics manufacturers on sustainability, climate and energy policy, and how "green" their products are. The company ranked fourth of fifteen electronics companies (moving up five places from the previous year) with a score of 4.6/10 down from 4.9. Greenpeace praises Apple's sustainability, noting that the company exceeded its 70% global recycling goal in 2010. It continues to score well on the products rating with all Apple products now being free of PVC vinyl plastic and brominated flame retardants. However, the guide criticizes Apple on the Energy criteria for not seeking external verification of its greenhouse gas emissions data and for not setting out any targets to reduce emissions. In January 2012, Apple requested that their cable maker, Volex, begin producing halogen-free USB and power cables.
Apple is the world's second-largest information technology company by revenue after Samsung Electronics, and the world's third-largest mobile phone maker. It is also the largest publicly traded corporation in the world by market capitalization, with an estimated market capitalization of $446 billion by January 2014. As of June 2014, Apple maintains 425 retail stores in fourteen countries as well as the online Apple Store and iTunes Store, the latter of which is the world's largest music retailer. As of September 29, 2012, it employs 72,800 permanent full-time employees and 3,300 temporary full-time employees worldwide.
In its fiscal year ending in September 2011, Apple Inc. reported a total of $108 billion in annual revenues—a significant increase from its 2010 revenues of $65 billion—and nearly $82 billion in cash reserves. On March 19, 2012, Apple announced plans for a $2.65-per-share dividend beginning in fourth quarter of 2012, per approval by their board of directors. On September 2012, Apple reached a record share price of more than $705 and closed at above 700. With 936,596,000 outstanding shares (as of June 30, 2012),
The company's worldwide annual revenue in 2013 totaled $170 billion. In May 2013, Apple entered the top ten of the Fortune 500 list of companies for the first time, rising 11 places above its 2012 ranking to take the sixth position.
|Pre-tax earnings||US$22 billion||US$12 billion||US$4 billion||US$38 billion|
|Global tax||US$10 million||US$7 million||US$4 million||US$21 million|
Apple has created subsidiaries in low-tax places such as the Republic of Ireland, the Netherlands, Luxembourg and the British Virgin Islands to cut the taxes it pays around the world. According to the New York Times, in the 1980s Apple was among the first tech companies to designate overseas salespeople in high-tax countries in a manner that allowed the company to sell on behalf of low-tax subsidiaries on other continents, sidestepping income taxes. In the late 1980s Apple was a pioneer of an accounting technique known as the "Double Irish With a Dutch Sandwich," which reduces taxes by routing profits through Irish subsidiaries and the Netherlands and then to the Caribbean.
British Conservative Party Member of Parliament Charlie Elphicke published research on October 30, 2012, which showed that some multinational companies, including Apple Inc., were making billions of pounds of profit in the UK, but were paying an effective tax rate to the UK Treasury of only 3 percent, well below standard corporation tax. He followed this research by calling on the Chancellor of the Exchequer George Osborne to force these multinationals, which also included Google and The Coca-Cola Company, to state the effective rate of tax they pay on their UK revenues. Elphicke also said that government contracts should be withheld from multinationals who do not pay their fair share of UK tax. In June 2014 the European Commissioner for Competition launched an investigation of Apple's tax practices in Ireland, as part of a wider probe of multi-national companies' tax arrangements in various European countries.
Apple has been a participant in various legal proceedings and claims since it began operation. In particular, Apple is known for and promotes itself as actively and aggressively enforcing its intellectual property interests. Some litigation examples include Apple v. Samsung, Apple v. Microsoft, Motorola Mobility v. Apple Inc., and Apple Corps v. Apple Computer.
As of 2014, Apple is listed as a partner of the Product RED campaign. The campaign's mission is to prevent the transmission of HIV from mother to child by 2015. In November 2012, Apple donated $2.5 million to the American Red Cross to aid relief efforts after Hurricane Sandy.
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