Apple overtakes Microsoft

iPhone and iPad maker becomes the most valuable tech company


It turns out that the future was in hardware after all. In what some are calling a symbol of one of the most remarkable corporate turnarounds in business history, the market valuation of Apple Inc. has surpassed that of longtime rival Microsoft for the first time ever. At the close of trading Wednesday, Apple’s market capitalization reached nearly US$223 billion compared to about US$219 billion for Microsoft, which has long been the reigning tech champ thanks largely to Windows’ stranglehold on the market for computer operating systems. The change in fortunes follows Apple’s decision several years ago to bring back co-founder Steve Jobs and transform the company from a troubled maker of computers into purveyor of sleek and sexy consumer electronics devices, including the iPod, iPhone and iPad.

New York Times

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Apple overtakes Microsoft

  1. Well deserved. I'm surprised it took this long.

    • "Well deserved"? Rofl… On what grounds? I've heard Steve Jobs state that he doesn't want MORE market share, Apple Iphone(s) and Ipads don't even support flash technology (anyone saying flash will disappear anytime is delusional), the Ipad has clearly no marketing objective, it has no absolute use beyond its niche market. Apple products are proven to be marked up vs competitors, Apple limits itself software-wise… I can go on…

      • Maybe on the grounds that they make products that are, by-in-large, superior to any of their competition?

        Apple products are only "proven to be marked up" if you refuse to see beyond the usual specs that people look at. Take their laptops, which are the best by far on the market: their incredible construction, excellent speakers, backlit keyboards, beautiful displays, and best customer service in the industry make them vastly superior to anything that PC manufacturers offer. I certainly don't mind paying a bit more than a PC laptop with the same processor and RAM to get all of that.

        And Apple doesn't "limit itself software-wise". What the heck does that even mean, anyway? You can install pretty much any OS you want on a Mac, and just about every major software company makes Mac versions of their programs, too (and more are starting to every day – like Valve and AutoCAD for instance).

        OS X is, by far, the most advanced and elegant OS in the world.

        I really wish there was competition because I think it's healthy to have someone breathing down your neck a bit, but no other company out there can compare with Apple's products. Every other company just seems to be playing a poor game of catchup.

        • http://www.itbusinessedge.com/cm/blogs/enderle/how-apple-uses-inferior-parts-to-build-superior-products/?cs=40819

          In other words Apple's design and marketing strategy is to use cheaper, inferior technology and bundle it into a tech-for-dummies package and sell it at a premium. It's fantastic how you're buying into that.

          I'll stick to my expansively upgradeable tech, thank you.

          • Your links are completely irrelevant. The first cites no examples of this out of date tech that Apple is apparently using (I'll be the first to admit that they occasionally take too long to replace processors, particularly in their Mac Pros, but their iMacs and laptops typically have the latest processors in them pretty close to their release date – delays are typically due to supply issues). Other than their Mac Pro and on occasion their video cards, the guy is just flat out wrong.

            The other two concern iPads and iPod Touches/iPhones, which don't use technology that is either cheap or inferior. And as the first article points out, Apple provides a superior user experience.

            And how is OS X "tech for dummies"? Because it's well designed? Because it's well programmed? Or is it the stability that offends you? Forgive me for "buying into" a superior product with no comparison in the marketplace.

            And OS X is just as programable as Windows. You just need to know some Unix and you can do pretty much anything you want. Of course, you're clearly not actually familiar with OS X, or you wouldn't be making such uninformed claims.

            You're welcome to stick to your "expansively upgradeable tech" and your poorly designed software all you like. I would like to point out that for the average consumer, upgradeability beyond a bigger HD or some more RAM isn't necessary, and anyone can upgrade those things in a Mac. And the Macs that I actually praised, the laptops, are just as upgradeable as any PC laptop, meaning RAM and HD.

            And for the record, my main computer is a hackintosh which I built myself. It's highly upgradeable, and dual boots OS X and Windows like a charm.

            I really don't understand what bothers some people so much about good design…

          • I'm not bothered by Apple's good design. I know my way in and out of technology so I'm bothered to pay a premium to have less options.

            I'm also mostly bothered by news like this.

        • "a bit more" typically works out to about 1.5x. And that's if you don't shop around on the PC side.

          As for your other qualities, construction is decent. Speakers and displays are adequate. You can certainly get better and more functional in your laptop if you shop around. (Check out the fujitsu lifestream series of PCs if you like the whole multi-touch thing) Backlit keyboards are a personal preference — I'm a pure touch-typist for instance (my regular keyboard is this for goodness sakes) so for me, backlit is a distraction more than a help.

          Customer service is decent, especially for a large firm, I'll admit. And OS X is a decent OS.. although it remains to be seen how well it holds up once the market share of apple crosses the threshold where you get some serious interest from the virus crews.

          But you really are paying a hell of a price premium for a machine that is limited in its software. Sure, it *could* have everything the PC has for software.. but the truth is, it doesn't. Not right now. And much of what it has (even the vaunted Adobe Photoshop) runs better on PCs than it does on Apple products anyway.

      • flash will dissapear

        • One can only hope that you're right, or at least that Adobe would start writing a decent standard and OS X plugin!

    • Finally something we agree on :D

  2. "It turns out that the future was in hardware after all."

    Er, no. Apple got new converts with pretty hardware. But it kept them loyal with better software.

    • More intuitive, certainly, but better? I'm not sure I'd agree with that. Apple's market share is still less than 10% so we'll see if people change their tune when OSX gets big enough to be targeted by malware writers.

  3. Ah! My mistake.. Lifebook is the Fujitsu.

    As for laptops, I must admit, I wasn't thinking of laptop prices but of the general computer prices. I mean, if you want to restrict a comparison to the best product one company puts out, it shouldn't be a surprise that it compares at least favorably to what other makers are putting out in the same product line. However, I simply don't think most people are judging their PC purchases purely on the laptop a company produces.

    Now, for rugged I can't really compare. I take care of my machines, and my "fieldwork" generally doesn't take me out of boardrooms or sales offices. However, for those I find the tablet/laptop convertable PC to be really useful.

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