The resurgence of Apple's (AAPL) stock price has been an amazing turn of events from last summer, when the stock appeared to headed down the drain. It seemed everyone had written an obituary for the company, saying Action Alerts PLUS charity portfolio holding Apple could only be considered a phone hardware company and nothing else.
The stock is flirting with all-time highs now. Since the beginning of 2017, Apple is up a whopping 16% or so, making the biggest company in the world worth well over $600 billion.
What I find fascinating about the company itself is the competitive spirit of Apple, which produces some of sleekest and most user-friendly devices around. It is often not the first to do so, but when you are good at re-engineering other products and have a following like Apple does, then eventually you are going to leave the competition in the dust.
Many look at Apple as simply a phone hardware company; if you strictly go by its sales figures, you would mostly be correct. This year marks the 10-year anniversary of the iPhone, an amazing device that the late Steve Jobs said would revolutionize society. And indeed, it has. But what about the first mover? That would be Blackberry (BBRY) , formerly known as Research in Motion (RIMM). Before the iPhone came on the scene, everyone with a smartphone used a Blackberry. Apple was late to come with its phone, but it didn't really matter.
As the functionality changed and demand for services and apps increased, Apple saw an opening and eventually crushed Blackberry, which once was riding higher than Apple, with a large market share. Today, Blackberry is barely holding on and is probably more of an acquisition candidate -- but then, who wants to compete with Apple?
I have been a big Fitbit (FIT) fan for years. I have used mine wherever I go, to count steps and other great features. Well, after six years I have retired my Fitbit in exchange for an Apple Watch, which I cannot get off my wrist! It is a tremendous device, a motivator and a great companion. It will do exactly what Fitbit does and more, so why do I need duplication?
Fitbit's stock is down some 90% from its highs and getting strangled by Apple. Again, late to the party with its watch, but Apple wins again. Further, it may very well set a trend for fashion, and if the previous earnings for Fossil (FOSL) are any indication, it is happening right now. This stock is down about 70% from its highs.
What is next for Apple to conquer? It seems it eventually wins wherever it steps, the latest being original programming with movie and TV content. Netflix (NFLX) , Amazon (AMZN) and Hulu have blazed a fast trail, and Apple is getting a late start. But as always, it will make an impact. Everyone is watching out.