This Week’s Ups and Downs at Apple

eHow Tech Blog

For quite a long time it seemed like Apple could do no wrong, and the company’s stock price was a vivid demonstration of this.  While it has had occasional fluctuations, there hasn’t been anything that dramatic to watch. All that changed on Wednesday as the market reacted to a quarterly report that didn’t meet expectations.

Apple reported its latest quarterly earnings on Tuesday, July 24. Despite boasting the best second quarter the company has ever had, it fell short of analyst expectations.  Even after selling 17 million iPad tablets (a number that eclipsed how many tablets were sold by every manufacturer in the same quarter a year ago) and putting 26 million iPhones into consumer hands, the company brought in $35 billion in revenue, falling $2 billion short of analyst projections.

On Wednesday, the day following the report, the market reacted by taking 4.32 percent off of the stock’s value. That adds up to $25.95, which brought Apple down to $574.97 a share.

Despite the reaction to the quarterly report, one of the tidbits to come out of the quarterly report that made me chuckle was in reference to the Apple TV set top box.  This media-streaming device had always been referred to as a “hobby” by late co-founder Steve Jobs, and current CEO Tim Cook still refers to it as such.  One has to wonder, though, how a device that sold 1.3 million units in the most recent quarter still qualifies as a “hobby.”

While the Apple news from Wall Street may not have been the best, there was still good new for the company: Apple released Mac OS X 10.8 Mountain Lion in the early hours of Wednesday morning, bringing with it over 200 new features for the operating system that powers the company’s computers.

As with any major software release, Mountain Lion wasn’t without its issues – such as some problems with Wi-Fi — but overall it seemed to be a well-received update to the Apple family.  There were certainly a lot of new features to check out, and it will take some time to explore all of them fully. But isn’t half the fun of technology learning all of the new things it can do?

While it hasn’t been the smoothest of weeks for Apple, things are certain to improve with time, and I’d say that its stock price is almost a lock to go back up.  The iPhone 5 looks to be releasing sometime this fall, and rumors of a smaller iPad – dubbed the iPad Mini by the media – are building up a lot of steam as well.  If you have a lover of all things Apple on your holiday shopping list, you may have one very expensive season ahead of you.

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