Several days ago, the financial site SmartMoney did an article that suggested that Apple, which was once long thought of as being the tech world's biggest underdog, is now in the enviable position of soon becoming the biggest company in all of the U.S.!
Yes, that means even bigger than big old Microsoft itself, and not to mention also the current largest U.S. corporation, Exxon Mobil! Wow, now that's a far cry from the days when Dell's CEO, Michael Dell, utter his infamous words of what he thought that Steve Jobs should do with Apple when he stated: "I'd shut it down and give the money back to the shareholders."
That was 1997, this is 2010. Things are radically different as Apple finds itself sitting suddenly at the number three position, while Dell, on the other hand, has slipped to the 78th. Apple's market cap, the overall value of its stock, is now a whopping and mind numbing $231 billion to Dell's $29.8 billion!
Of course, market cap isn't the only measuring stick that can be applied when comparing companies to one another and when it comes to sales, well - what the hell, Dell is still a little ahead of Apple at number 42, but the question is for how much longer? Apple, unlike Dell, or any other company, is about a lot more than just computers these days. Apple is also about being a big player in the mobile phone space, as well as music players, music distribution and software distribution through its popular iTunes and App Store. In all of these regards, Apple has completely changed how the world does business. Even the venerable Mac line of computers have seen a big revival of sorts. In April, for example, it's being reported that Mac sales are up by a resounding 39%, with analysts now predicting that Apple could sell as many as 3.2 million Macs for the June second quarter - its best ever! No wonder why some are now predicting that Apple is well on its way to surpassing Microsoft and maybe even Exxon as the biggest of them all.
So, will, or could, Apple actually surpass Microsoft, its old and long time rival, in size and power?
Maybe, just maybe? At least it's certainly possible, but it's not entirely guaranteed.
However, in conclusion, it's certainly looking more and more likely that it will each day. Of course, a lot is going to depend on external factors, such as the overall economy, meaning not only that of the U.S. itself, but that of the world as a whole. For example, the recent economic crisis in Greece has not only been hitting world economies hard, but individual companies as well, Apple included. This one crisis alone has resulted in Apple's market cap, for instance, dropping to $231 billion from a high of around $245 billion! Ouch, now that smarts. However, barring such future outside influences, Apple is indeed posed to topple Microsoft both in sales and market cap. It has already surpassed it when it comes to money in the bank, I believe, so it's not that hard to imagine seeing it toppling both Microsoft, or maybe even Exxon, for the much coveted title of the being the largest, biggest, most tremendous, huge and the most colossus company in the U.S.
Now, who would have ever thunked it?
And that's my 2 cents 4 this Tuesday, May 18, 2010