Feb 4, 2015 — by: E. Werner Reschke
Categories: Apple TV, iCloud, iPad, iPhone, iWatch, Jobs, Steve Jobs, Tim Cook

Apple's 5 Year PlanA good CEO knows that if their company rests on its success, impending doom will soon be at their doorstep. IBM became distracted and complacent. Microsoft believed it was invincible with over 90% market share. Thank goodness Tim Cook and Apple think differently.

Cook knows that despite all the success and glory with the iPod, the iPhone, the iPad and the resurgence of the Mac, if Apple stands still history shows that Apple’s fate is certain — decline. While IBM and Microsoft are still with us today, they are not the companies they were at the peak of their success. The question is how Apple will maintain its success into the next decade.

Emerging Markets

Part of Apple’s plan is to expand into emerging markets. We see this clearly with Apple Watch. The “wearables” market is a huge growth opportunity for Apple. While most millennials do not wear watches, Apple Watch may change that. First it is a fashion statement — and those in their teens and 20’s are very aware of what pop culture thinks is cool. No doubt, Apple Watch will be considered cool, but also a status symbol. Second Apple Watch is more than a watch. It is also a health instrument which is huge among this demographic as well as others. Whether tracking your daily exercise or monitoring your current heart rate, Apple Watch has the potential to make us live healthier lives by reminding us to exercise more.

Coupled with Apple Watch (and iPhone 6 / iPhone 6 Plus) is Apple Pay. Apple Pay makes Apple Watch even more useful. While a somewhat minor advance in daily convenience, secure payments is big business. Apple Pay can generate a large and new revenue stream for Apple for years to come.

Then there is Apple TV. The hobby-not-so-hobby device has huge upside potential, if Apple can get the content portion of the equation right through small bundle deals or a la carte programming.

Existing Markets

In addition to advancing in emerging markets, Apple has its eye on returning to a mature and lucrative market — the corporate space. When Jobs returned to Apple in 1996, Apple was trying to be everything to everyone. Steve quickly focused the company on the consumer and a few key creative markets. The clear focus of the company was away from corporate use and to personal/consumer use. However, now that Apple has a much more stable footing, all may be changing. Apple’s iPad team is working closely with IBM to develop apps and cloud-based systems to address a number of corporate needs. Apple is indeed stepping back into the corporate space, and if successful, this wil be yet another pot of gold for the company.

Apple is far from dead, and also far from the peak of its success. While others in the past have squandered their opportunities, Apple remains focused and poised to grow its business in multiple areas without loosing its soul or its way.

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