Why do some companies do business with their competitors?

Discussion in 'Apple, Inc and Tech Industry' started by mrsir2009, Apr 16, 2011.

  1. mrsir2009 macrumors 604


    Sep 17, 2009
    Melbourne, Australia
    Why do some companies do business with their competitors? Things like:

    •Google supports Firefox by paying them to have the Google search engine on their default homepage, when Google has their own browser.

    •Companies like Samsung and Toshiba make parts for Apple computers even though they too make computers.
  2. steve2112 macrumors 68040


    Feb 20, 2009
    East of Lyra, Northwest of Pegasus
    Because they are only competitors in one small market. Google realizes people are going to run browsers other than Chrome, regardless of what they do. Their business is ads, so the more people they can get to use Google search, the better. The browser is a very small business for them, and they want as much exposure as they can get. The money they pay Mozilla is probably nothing compared to how much revenue they get from Firefox users using Google search.

    As companies like Samsung and Toshiba, they are huge companies that are involved in many different industries. The consumer electronics they offer a only a small part of their overall business. They would only be hurting themselves by not selling components to a company like Apple.
  3. Apple OC macrumors 68040

    Apple OC

    Oct 14, 2010
    all companies do this ... business is business

    If you were in business ... you never know when you might need help from a competitor to fulfill an order or service
  4. Fubar1977 macrumors 6502a


    Jul 30, 2010
    North Yorkshire, UK
    Yep, it`s not uncommon for a company to be your competitor in one area and your supplier/customer in another area.
    Samsung, for example, make iPad components and also the Galaxy Tab.
  5. ECUpirate44 macrumors 603


    Mar 22, 2010
    All companies do it. It's called a strategic alliance.
  6. maflynn Moderator


    Staff Member

    May 3, 2009
    The prospect of making money in one sector outweighs the fact they're competitors in another.
  7. kdarling macrumors P6


    Jun 9, 2007
    First university coding class = 47 years ago
    When the other company has a desirable skillset or intellectual property, that you do not.

    Some companies, like Apple, share almost nothing they create with others. This might seem like an advantage, but sometimes not:

    Others license almost everything. Microsoft, for example, has made Exchange ActiveSync a world standard by willingly licensing it to anyone. Heck, Google even paid extra for the right to call it by their own name.

    That meant that Apple had little choice but to pay Microsoft for a license as well.

    (At the time, many Windows Mobile fans were wondering why MS would give a competitor such crucial technology for business. If they hadn't, Apple would've no doubt tried to come up with something of their own.)
  8. Dr McKay macrumors 68040

    Dr McKay

    Aug 11, 2010
    Because they are only rivals on certain product lines. But on other lines they work together, makes sense really.

    If you were Apple or Microsoft, would you shoot down something like the Office for Mac project, just because each company has a rival OS on the market, or a rival smartphone?
  9. gnasher729 macrumors P6


    Nov 25, 2005
    Every company, except when it has completely irrational or incompetent leadership, will do business with their competitors when it is good for them.

    Google and Firefox: Is it beneficial for Google to give money to Firefox so that Google is the default search engine on Firefox? Absolutely. Much better for them than to let Microsoft in, and suddenly Bing is the default on one of the most widely used browsers.

    Samsung and Apple: So what if Samsung didn't sell parts to Apple? Apple would buy them somewhere else. Samsung would lose tons of money, someone else would make tons of money. What good would that do to Samsung? It would be totally irrational not to take Apple's money.

    There are obviously borderline cases. Would Apple buy Dell monitors for its employees to use? Probably not. Would they buy Dell printers? Quite possible. Would Dell buy iPads for the use of its employees? Probably not. Does Apple's art department use iPhoto or Photoshop? Probably Photoshop.
  10. Fubar1977 macrumors 6502a


    Jul 30, 2010
    North Yorkshire, UK
    Fixed that for ya.
    Totally agree btw ;)
  11. thermodynamic Suspended


    May 3, 2009
    It's just a contract. When not directly as competition, companies will buy the cheapest components via contracts.

    Isn't the rumor true that Bill Gates owns Apple stock and that Steve Jobs owns Microsoft stock?

    Also, Microsoft and IBM teamed up to sell OS/2, with IBM not remembering or caring about their previous team-up with Microsoft in 1980... :) After their divorce where Microsoft got the 32-bit TCP/IP stack and disk IO subsystems, with IBM getting the ability to run Windows 3.1 within OS/2 (and MS subsequently tinkering with the code to make it hard for IBM to keep up, especially with Win32s), IBM would probably not want to deal with MS ever again...

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