Apple vs. Microsoft

Apple vs. Microsoft
Microsoft, headquartered in Redmond, Washington, is one of the most profitable multinational corporations in the world. Microsoft Corporation is primarily engaged in the development, manufacture, and distribution of computer software, consumer electronics, personal computers, and other electronic products. Microsoft Windows, which is used in computers, is the company’s most well-known product. On the other hand, Apple is a multinational corporation based in California (Kumar & Surisetty, 2012). Apple specializes in computer software design, sales, manufacturing, and consumer electronics, and online services. The iPhone smartphone and iPad tablets are two of Apple Inc.’s most well-known devices. Both companies sell the same type of products, something that places them in fierce and fascinating competition. The study gives an analysis of Microsoft and Apple through comparison and differentiation of the two companies.

The rivalry between Apple and Microsoft started when Microsoft decided to license its own operating system to various computer manufacturers. The action led to multiple distinct machines running Windows while Apple decided to maintain its operating system and develop its own hardware. As result, the rivalry is still ongoing as seen in in Apple and its Mac OS, Windows as well as Microsoft. At Apple, the one-size-fits-all strategy underscores a specific product (Kumar, & Surisetty, 2012). Microsoft has more than 100 Windows 8 and Windows 10 devices marketed. This exemplifies the Apple and Microsoft strategies in brief. Apple limits a consumer choice while Microsoft multiplies them.

The two companies have greatly contributed to technological developments. Although they appear to be bitter rivals when it comes to products and sales, they have positively helped in technological advancements. Before Microsoft and Apple, computers required their won own rooms and took up the full wall with a screen which was only approximately four to five inches wide. The spectrum of colors never existed, there were only black and green. Prior to Steve Jobs and Bill Gates innovations, it was not possible to download music and spend some time on the internet (Kumar, & Surisetty, 2012). Microsoft and Apple have tremendously changed the computer usage. Many people can now enjoy various services offered by the two companies.

Apple enjoyed moderate success during the 1980s and 1990s. However, Microsoft recorded a consistent growth each year. Through concurrence with hardware vendors, Microsoft supplied its hardware easily. In the late 1990s, as Apple got praised for its creative vision and groundbreaking product lines, Microsoft was still ruling in the business sector. The worldwide growth of Microsoft made it the standard for the majority of the corporate world as well as local consumers in the U.S (Stross, 2015). The customer base of Apple relied on specialty niches such as the graphic design, the artistic hipsters of the world and education. Apple struggled to provide high-quality products to maintain its consumers. And in the early 1990s, sales became stagnant. Apple experienced dangerous problems and they had to drop their intentions of competing with Microsoft and focus on how to salvage the company. It required being different to appeal to the consumers who needed something unique and did not want what Microsoft offered. The realization made Apple stand and succeed. They started to develop based on the weaknesses of Microsoft by offering what was not offered by Microsoft.

There has been tremendous progress between Apple and Microsoft, however, they have achieved the success by using different strategies and also copying from each other the same strategies they develop. Despite the fact that the serious competition between Microsoft and Apple might have ended, there is still struggle to outsmart each other and rule the market. Microsoft’s Windows 10 was very popular compared to Apple’s macOS or OS X, with an approximated 400 million devices using the Microsoft OS during early 2016. Moreover, Microsoft linked its poor performance to the low purchase of the Surface 4 and the Surface Book. In spite the fact that Windows 10 is very popular due to the number of users, it is essential to recognize that many people use Windows 10 on their tablets and laptops compared to the usage of macOS or iOS. The rivalry is clear (Kumar, & Surisetty, 2012). It is affordably possible for one to have many Windows 10 devices unlike owning the smartphones, tablets, and notebooks from Apple.

However, the complexity of owning Apple products does not have an effect on the company’s performance. Interestingly, Mac and iPad users are increasing. Most people that work in offices in organizations prefer iPhones and iPads compared to Macs in-house. Microsoft and Apple are continuously evolving and conquering the consumer market (Greenwald et al., 2013). The two companies have come up with different methods of gaining popularity in the consumer market.

Microsoft works with other manufacturers for the purpose of having its Windows 10 running on as many devices as possible. Retailers such as Dell and HP are allowed to sell the Microsoft products, something that provides IT with increased options. Microsoft company is progressively announcing new collaborative partnerships (Stross, 2015). The most recent collaboration is with Samsung which has greatly strengthened its dedication to expanding collaboration.

Provision of unique products to the customers is one of the strategies used by Apple. The strategy has helped the company. For many years Apple has been recognized as a company which provides high-end devices with effective hardware and at the same time keeping a strict leash on the iOS and MacOS ecosystems. The strategy has made the hardware famous with IT (Manjoo, 2010). There exists uniformity in Apple’s hardware and software leading to efficiency during launching and transmission of security updates. A lot of customers that use Apple products think that it is easier to provide security to Apple devices in relation to the few who think that it is hard to provide security to the Mac.

On the other hand, Microsoft Inc. has diversified its software collection through the use of OEMs. The reason is to make sure that the Windows 10 operating system is used in many devices from the entry level to premium. Although there is the provision of multiple options, Microsoft’s open ecosystem can lead to some problems in relation to security and maintenance (Greenwald et al., 2013). Moreover, the exclusivity of Apple has the chance of developing some disadvantages for innovation but provides safe and reliable business environment.

In conclusion, Microsoft and Apple are and will still be competing in the market because they provide the same type of products targeting similar consumers. They are constantly trying to outsmart each other and dominate the market. As far as software is concerned, Microsoft has an edge because most devices use its Windows 10 operating system compared to the usage of MacOS and iOS. Microsoft’s products are more affordable than those of Apple and therefore most customers prefer Microsoft’s (Manjoo, 2010). However, the advantage does not mean that Apple is performing badly, it is quite the contrary. There is an increasing number of people that use Mac and iPad devices with many professionals using iPads and iPhones compared to those who use Macs in-house. Microsoft and Apple are related since they share similar strategies to produce products and even enter the market, something that escalates the rivalry.


Kumar, S., & Surisetty, S. (2012). Microsoft vs. Apple: Resilience against distributed denial-of-service attacks. IEEE Security & Privacy, 10(2), 60-64.

Greenwald, K., MacAskill, H., Poitras, O., & Rushe, J. (2013). Microsoft handed the NSA access to encrypted messages. the Guardian, 12.

Manjoo, F. (2010). Invincible Apple: 10 Lessons from the coolest company anywhere. Fast Company, 68-76.

Stross, D. H. (2015). The Microsoft way: The real story of how the company outsmarts its competition. Basic Books.

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