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 Apple is now the 3rd biggest company in the world

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PostSubject: Apple is now the 3rd biggest company in the world   Mon Apr 05, 2010 3:12 pm

It passed walmart. Here's the full article that you don't really need to read

Two tech titans are still brushing off their confetti and digesting their cake after a pair of weekend milestones. Microsoft marked its 35th birthday on Sunday. Apple turned 34 late last week and then, Saturday, unwrapped its iPad.

But as the two rivals rumble toward middle age, their brands somehow seem years apart. Among many consumers, their corporate images represent a clash between frumpy and fresh.

Microsoft, to some, appears a tad flabby in the middle — a Chrysler Town & Country driver with a 9 p.m. bedtime. Apple, in some eyes, looks sleeker and younger — a hipster in ragtop Beemer packed with chic friends sporting mobile toys.

And as predawn queues formed Saturday to snatch the first iPad tablets from store shelves, Apple perhaps even bolstered its fashionable geek cred.

In marketing, “we have an expression for it — the ‘coolness factor,’ ” said Ellen Lytle, a former advertising exec before becoming a graphic design professor at colleges in Kentucky, Ohio and Georgia. “Microsoft has no ‘coolness factor’ and Apple is all about it.”

(Msnbc.com is a joint-venture of Microsoft and NBC Universal.)

With its iPod, iPhone and its latest gadget, “Apple has embraced its perception as a niche company, and has maintained complete control over all hardware — which tends to be how people make their lasting, visual snap decisions,” said Daniel Ruby, research director at Chitika, Inc., a Westborough, Mass.-based online advertising network.

Microsoft, meanwhile, allowed Hewlett-Packard, Dell and Gateway to determine the look and feel of many of its products, Ruby said, and that “is the single biggest factor in their perception as the middle-aged company with a paunch and a minivan.”

Branding sense means dollars. On current accounting ledgers, Microsoft overshadows Apple: Microsoft’s market cap is $256.97 billion; Apple’s is $214.09 billion. But Apple is getting awfully big — awfully fast — in Microsoft’s rearview mirror. Consider that a decade ago Microsoft’s market cap was almost $590 billion and Apple’s was about $16 billion.

And just last week Apple surpassed Wal-mart to become the third biggest company in the United States. Microsoft is ranked second, behind Exxon.

If iPad is a consumer smash, some market analysts envision Apple’s stock price touching $300 per share. (Apple’s shares are $236.1 in midmorning trading on April 5). If that happens, Apple’s market cap would reach $270 billion, eclipsing Microsoft’s — if its cap were to remain stagnant.

Market cap, one method for measuring a company’s value, may represent the real chase. Among some tech insiders, however, bets on the ultimate winner are all over the board — with many prognosticator linking their forecasts to the potential rise of the iPad — or to long-term, lukewarm reactions to the new tablet.

From this moment forth, my thoughts be bloody, or be nothing worth
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PostSubject: Re: Apple is now the 3rd biggest company in the world   Fri Apr 09, 2010 4:39 am

i hate apple. facepalm
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