Apple 7th Most Admired Company

Discussion in ' News Discussion' started by MacRumors, Mar 6, 2007.

  1. MacRumors macrumors bot


    Apr 12, 2001

    Fortune magazine has ranked Apple as America's 7th most admired company in its survey of the Top 20 Most Admired Companies. The survey was conducted by asking 3,322 "executives, directors, and securities analysts to select the 10 companies they admire most."

    According to more detailed results, Apple ranked first in Innovation and sixth in Quality of products/services, and was the second-highest ranked computer company (behind IBM).

    Fortune says that having "fresh ideas" and "being green" were top qualities of this year's winners.
  2. rockthecasbah macrumors 68020


    Apr 12, 2005
    Moorestown, NJ
    It's great to see Apple recognized for their creativity and products, but the "being green" quality is certainly an area where Apple can improve on. The fact is that although they offer clean and simple products, their components and architecture make them very unsafe in some cases environmentally. It's not like Apple's alone, but they could certainly do better environmentally. Leading an industry revolution could cost more but bring even greater praise and business to Apple, a route they should certainly consider.
  3. Canerican macrumors regular

    Jul 22, 2006
    I'm surprised... all that DRM weighs badly on them... and all the negative press from Jobs' illegal dealings... but they make stylish products and they sell them for obscene prices (which I pay for some reason)... capitalism at its best!
  4. GFLPraxis macrumors 604


    Mar 17, 2004
    While it's nice to see Apple get some recognition, the fact that Microsoft is on the list too makes me question the criteria for admiration.

    It's certainly not innovation :rolleyes:
  5. kuebby macrumors 68000


    Jan 18, 2007
    I think Apple does better at "being green" than people give them credit for. Computers are, by design, bad for the environment; the components that make up any computer are hazardous to animals and their creation contributes to global warming. But Apple does better than many other computer companies at recycling and efficent production.

    As for DRM giving them a bad name, I don't see the problem. First off, studies show that, on average, less than 5% people's music libraries are made up of DRM'd music. People buy from iTunes for the conveinence, if you're willing to wait then most people just buy the cd from Amazon marketplace. You have to give up something for getting instant gratification.
  6. Dane D. macrumors 6502a

    Apr 16, 2004
    Oh please, being 'green' could bring them greater praise. What a lode of dung, I'm so sick of hearing about this 'green' crap and global warming. They make it an excellent product that I want and am willing to pay for. Don't shackle a company with being 'green'. If I want 'green' than I buy some green beans.
  7. irmongoose macrumors 68030


    Dec 3, 2001
    Sometimes Tokyo, sometimes California
    I'm sorry but "executives, directors, and securities analysts" are not the ones who purchase products, so I don't see quite how this matters in any relevant way.

  8. macEfan macrumors 65816


    Apr 7, 2005
    Forbidden, you do not have access to that server
    cool, glad apple got that title.... and above microsoft's rating also :D

    I'm glad general electric got #1, they are a great company, and they've been around for such a long time...
  9. Digital Skunk macrumors 604

    Digital Skunk

    Dec 23, 2006
    In my imagination

    Wow man, that's right. I never thought about that. Apple is first in my list and MS is nowhere in that list. The only thing that I like about MS and Windows is the media center. After that there is nothing.:D
  10. SiliconAddict macrumors 603


    Jun 19, 2003
    Chicago, IL
    EDIT: OOPS. I thought Starbucks got #1. thank god. :p
    Starbucks #1? That deserves a big 'o Whiskey Tango Foxtrot.
    Toyota on the other hand. Yah. I would like to work for Toyota. I kinda hope they buy the Ford plant that is closing here in St. Paul.
  11. Zeke macrumors 6502

    Oct 5, 2002
    Greenville, SC
    I agree...especially since I just started working for them.
  12. Counterfit macrumors G3


    Aug 20, 2003
    sitting on your shoulder
    What illegal dealings? You mean the pheaking?

    By the by, where the **** do you get your information? You should fire them.
  13. Zwhaler macrumors 603


    Jun 10, 2006
    Yeah I also agree GE should be #1. And Toyota is up there too, awesome. "Microsoft slipped by 2 places compared to last year" :D
  14. Chef Medeski macrumors 6502a

    Chef Medeski

    Jun 14, 2005
    New York, NY
    True though, I mean there are a lot of easier ways to help the enviroment, but since they involve self-restraint instead of some thrid entity shackling the cost, they aren't often done.

    Also good point irngoose, I dont think this is a very fair assessment. Apple is #1 in innovation, tell me one thing they innovated this yr? iPhone. That was showed in '07. During '06 there was nothing unless putting in an obviously superior chip is seen as innovative, if so can someone get me a top job at a company?
  15. barkins macrumors regular


    Sep 15, 2006
    Encino, CA
    That whole list seems pretty bogus to me. I mean, GE as #1? What's up with that? And Toyota? Give me a break.

    Great, we admire companies that own everything and companies that have started to build worthless junk (and get away with it) because of a popular misconception of quality.
  16. quagmire macrumors 603


    Apr 19, 2004
    Good job Apple. Wal Mart though? Ugh. And reading the comments. Too many arrogant posts. Especially when it comes to people bashing/defending Toyota. Toyota deserves being there, but the comments talking about Toyota are arrogant. It is America's most admired companies, not most admired American companies. So Toyota is rightfully on there. And the person saying that Toyota employs more Americans then GM does needs to do some research. GM still employs more Americans then Toyota does by a wide margin. Toyota has 11 plants in the US( including the new Tundra plant in Texas). GM has 50 US plants. I love blind fanboism. :rolleyes:
  17. dejo Moderator


    Staff Member

    Sep 2, 2004
    The Centennial State
    Their rankings are confusing. Apple is #7 overall and yet 2nd in the Computer category (behind IBM) which didn't even make the Top 20. And GE has an overall score of 8.04 and lands at #1 but Fedex gets 8.53 (remember, higher is better) and lands at #6.
  18. Doctor Q Administrator

    Doctor Q

    Staff Member

    Sep 19, 2002
    Los Angeles
    I think that "executives, directors, and securities analysts" are likely to favor companies that are doing well, as in making lots of money, and perhaps having great management. That's to be admired when you are a businessperson or stockholder, and feared when you are a competitor.

    But the companies that consumers admire are likely to be different: those with excellent products, great customer service, good value for the price, or (let's be real about it) advertising that makes you think all those things about them.
  19. Avatar74 macrumors 65816


    Feb 5, 2007
    However, Apple consistently ranks among the highest across all industries in terms of consumer brand perception. That is, the brand name consistently represents greater product quality and satisfaction than any other brand in any industry... for about five years running now.

    I think the most critical point here is that Apple is one of the few companies that is universally admired by consumers, competitors, analysts, unrelated industries... It is not often that you see car manufacturers reference computer manufacturers as a "gold standard" but I saw it... A concept designer at GM described their most advanced prototype (the "skateboard" self-contained, drive by wire chassis/powertrain) as an "ipod on wheels". Clearly Apple is a gold standard to which other companies aspire -- across entirely unrelated industries.

    The win-win situation is driven not merely by Apple's product marketing and brand positioning, but by the fact that, when it comes down to it, they (as Guy Kawasaki once stated when asked why Apple is successful) design and market "cool stuff that people want."

    Other companies try to bruteforce success by artificial monopolies, by litigation, by advertising, but Apple's success is owed primarily to doing things right in terms of industrial design and innovation.

    What's also pretty interesting is that a cursory scan of their six thousand patents on file with the US Patent and Trademark Office reveals that very little intellectual capital is spent on ideas that do not make it to market. That is, within their economy of scale, it isn't feasible to file patents for every idea under the sun. Patents are filed at about the time they have a product development roadmap on working prototypes, and this means they have an extremely high success ratio among their innovations.

    This is largely the management style of Steve Jobs. He'll kill any project that doesn't fit with the tightly managed brand strategy of Apple and refocus their attention on making significant leaps into the future... and well ahead of their competitors. In a recently released memo (part of the ongoing antitrust lawsuit against Microsoft), the head of Microsoft's Mac Business Unit, in 1997, elucidated, among other things, that one of Apple's key strengths is that they identify needs/wants in the marketplace faster than their competitors... by several years, in fact.

    This again underscores that streamlined, properly focused R&D drives Apple's success. The key is not in delivering to customers thirteen mediocre choices... but a handful of great ones. That is what Apple does best and that is why they are almost universally admired/respected by consumers, manufacturers, and industry analysts.
  20. Cult Follower macrumors 6502a

    Cult Follower

    Feb 20, 2007
    North Dakota
  21. Doctor Q Administrator

    Doctor Q

    Staff Member

    Sep 19, 2002
    Los Angeles
    Very interesting comments. A lot of companies file patents and do R&D left and right, often hit on a great new development, but spend a lot of money on research that doesn't go directly into the product line. Sun, Google, Microsoft, IBM, and other companies have had lots of back-room projects that may or may not have paid off.

    If Apple focuses their research more tightly, is it because Steve and Apple are better at spotting the practical areas to look for innovations, are they smarter at making products based on their research, or or are they just lucky?
  22. flir67 macrumors 6502

    Jun 23, 2005
    if you knew that tons of your daily products you use were delivered by them then I think you wouldn't say what you did.

    ge created the worlds first hybric electic diesel locomotive.
    toyota's prius is a constant 240v rolling generator equal to about 10kw.

    its been very well hacked and tested to its limited. so the next time your power goes out and you go buy a noisey a** generator and requires gas every 6 hour's

    how about just plugging a receptale into your car and powering half your house.

    try that on for being green

  23. EricNau Moderator emeritus


    Apr 27, 2005
    San Francisco, CA
    I'm sure Apple has plenty of back-room projects as well (OS X on intel comes to mind). Although, I think many of Apple's back-room projects are for more of a "just in case" scenario.
  24. Philsy macrumors 6502a

    Jul 29, 2004
    South coast of England
    Actually, computers have the capability to be very good for the environment and, if people were more forward thinking, they could make all our lives more pleasant.

    For instance, I work from home using my Mac, so I don't contribute to global warming by driving or using other transportation to commute. I also order my groceries online and they are delivered to my door by a van making other drops, thus cutting down trips to the supermarket.

    OK, not everyone can work from home, but a fair percentage of people could for at least part of the week.

    Just think, less traffic on the roads, no need for investment in public transport, less global warming, and you can go for a blast in your car on empty roads for a bit of fun at weekends.

    How to get people to do this? Tax incentives for individuals and companies.
  25. Avatar74 macrumors 65816


    Feb 5, 2007
    Apple's success is no fluke. Of the myriad products that Apple's design team made under the leadership of Jony Ive, only one has been a significant failure... the G4 Cube... and look how promptly they killed that project.

    I have a co-worker who was a former product engineer at Apple. He described their product development roadmap as a calculated series of steps whereby they'd develop a small "feeler" product based on existing research into the marketplace, and gather feedback on other various functions and features available or desired, and then use the "feeler" product to gather hard data.

    "iPhone" is such a product... It's a tactical step in a much larger strategy which is actually pretty carefully calculated. It has become increasingly clear from various analysts' research and Apple's own, that consumers are increasingly accessing the internet from mobile devices. The long and short of it is that they've developed a Mobile Mac business unit and filed several patents associated with various features that seem to be extrapolations or extensions of what they're testing with the "iPhone"... the degree of iPhone's success will drive how much attention they focus on this division. But because they take small steps and deploy relatively narrow product lines, they're not spread too thin and have some excess capital to lose without incurring heaps of short-term debt.

    By the time iPhone was announced, it became clear to myself, my colleague who worked at Apple, and a number of others, that Apple is already thinking 2-3 years ahead and testing prototypes for the next big thing... a multitouch portable. I hesitate to say computer because the focus of this newer class of devices, ranging from phones to PDA's to PocketPC's is more aligned with communication and data interchange than it is with computing, in the traditional sense.

    They saw the writing on the wall and developed iTunes/iPod... not really luck when you consider that I, an outsider, wrote a research paper on internet music distribution in 1996... plenty of lead time to know it was inevitable well before the 2-3 years from concept to product for iPod.

    The key difference, I think, is that other companies often get mired in reading the feedback as desires for a specific feature. If people use tiny keyboards on PDAs, some manufacturers falsely assume this data means that people like tiny keyboards. No, what they like is tactile feedback.

    Apple's approach is, in contrast, not to merely incorporate a feature that seems to be helping competitors sell products today but to identify whether or not the tiny keyboard is always going to be the best means of input... tactile or not, and what the tradeoffs would be in order to introduce an input device of a higher order. This requires understanding not just what people think they want, but what their behaviors tell us about how they use technology and what they'd like to do with it in the future. In other words, if Apple THINKS they have a cool idea... their first inclination is to test it with a "feeler" product to understand how people will use it, not just how they might, and how that feature should function in order to be useful. Once they know the answers, then broader deployment of a range of products begins.

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