New Market Opportunities at Apple, Google and Microsoft
The three firms chosen to define new market opportunities for Apple, Google and Microsoft. For each of these three companies, three new market opportunities have been defined and are analyzed in terms of their achievability, risk, the implications on PR, and the potential to deliver financial improvements to each of the respective firms. Of these three companies, Google has the most advanced approaches to creating a highly collaborative approach to creating innovative new products and services in that they stress collaboration and communication above all (Klie, 2010). Apple and Microsoft also have unique approaches to defining new products, each relying on a more structured and agile-based approach to innovation (Wonglimpiyarat, 2012).
New Market Opportunities
The first firm, Apple has an innate series of strengths in digital media, imaging and user experience-based design. The first proposed business opportunity is a build-to-order iPad2 that is a hoem run in terms of market potential because it opens up the market for this device significantly. The risk however is equally great as this requires Apple to move away from their mass production model to one that can allow for mass customization from a customer’s perspective. It would however be a major improvement in Public Relations for Apple, as it would show the company is literally embracing an open architecture that is customer-driven. The financial implications are very significant for Apple as well, as a product like this would open up entirely new market segments.
The second Apple new business opportunity is bringing a Spotify-like model for video to iTunes. This is low-hanging fruit for Apple as they already have the underlying technology created, which also translates to a very low risk level as well. There is also a significant uplift for Apple PR as they move more into digital content quicker and at a lower cost to customers than the iTunes loyalty program allows fro. The financial impact is very significant from an upside revenue potential as well. The third Apple product is an iCar. An entire automobile designed to the form, fit and function aspects of Apple would be exceptional in terms of market potential. It would be a hoem run in terms of revenue and also in changing Apple’s business model. It would also create an exceptional level of risk and positive PR if done well. The financial implications are also very significant as well, both from succeeding or failing at this initiative.
Google has an exceptional level of insight and intelligence into how search technologies can be creatively and uniquely combined to create entirely new products. The three new business opportunities for Google include online shopping experience scores, truth filters for online reviews and personal knowledge assistants. The low-hanging fruit for Google in these new opportunities include online shopping scores and truth filter for online reviews. The risks of Google publishing online shopping experience reviews and a truth filter for online reviews are minimal as the development of these kinds of algorithms is a core competency of this firm (Klie, 2010). Both would be exceptionally effective in strengthening the PR of the Google brand as well as each provides valuable intelligence for consumers worldwide. The advertising revenue potential for the online shopping experience is highly positive, as is the potential for the truth filter from a licensing standpoint. Both could provide significant financial improvements to Google as each will drive a significantly greater level of traffic and advertising revenue as a result. The last new marketing opportunity for Google is the development of a Personal Knowledge Assistant. This would be a configurable alert service that could be equally used across mobility platforms running the Android operating system, in addition to providing visual alerts on the Google Glass headset when it is available for global sales. For Google, creating a configurable, customizable Personal Knowledge Assistant is low-hanging fruit, with little risk and much upside positive PR. Like the other two marketing opportunities, this also allows for significant upside revenue potential without bringing significant risk to the company as well.
Microsoft’s approach to innovation is best described as siloed, highly competitive and lacking in collaboration that Google is known for (Wonglimpiyarat, 2012). The three marketing opportunities for Microsoft include immersive 3D video gaming technology for the Xbox Connect, Voice-Activated Microsoft Office for iPad and a real-time personal budget tracker for mobile devices. The low-hanging fruit for Microsoft is creating a real-time budget tracker for mobile devices. The risk on this is very low as Microsoft already has this technology and the PR would be positive, as Microsoft lags Google and Apple with mobile application development. It would however be a minimal increase in the financial performance of the company given the pricing models for mobile applications today. The two other projects, immersive 3D video gaming technology for Xbox Connect and voice-activated Microsoft Office for iPad2, would be home runs for the company yet would also be exceptionally risky as well. It would force the company to develop a high level of cross-department integration and support, a skill set Microsoft has shown to not be that good at (Wonglimpiyarat, 2012). The risk therefore for each of these would be quite significant, yet the PR would be exceptionally strong as it would show Microsoft is capable of combining their technologies to better serve customers. Both would have very significant revenue potential as well, with the voice-activated Microsoft Office for iPad2 immediately opening up a sizeable Apple customer base that does not have a suitable office suite application today.
Klie, S. (2010). Google’s innovation imperative. Canadian HR Reporter, 23(16), 14-14,16.
Wonglimpiyarat, J. (2012). Technology strategies and standard competition – comparative innovation cases of Apple and Microsoft. Journal of High Technology Management Research, 23(2), 90.