It had been predicted that at some point, possibly even by the end of 2010, Apple's high-flying stock would eventually reach parity with Microsoft's and then, most likely, surpass it.
Well, that day has come early and Apple now finds itself in the enviable position of being the world's most valuable tech company, knocking and toppling, in the process, mighty Microsoft down into second place.
Of course, that was yesterday and that could all change by the end of today, with Microsoft reclaiming the top spot. In fact, I personally expect that the two super-sized tech giants to sea-saw each other, back and forth, until eventually, barring an all-out depression or complete market collapse or something along those lines, Apple should, I believe, eventually emerge well ahead of Microsoft and that for the foreseeable future.
Of course, all of this hasn't gone unnoticed, and all of the big news organizations have been quick to note this amazing accomplishment. I remember it so well, while growing up how Window fan boys would forever torment me on how much bigger and superior Microsoft was. They would constantly remind me how tiny and insignificant little old Apple was, compared to Microsoft. By pointing out just how much bigger Microsoft was, they basically implied it was bigger because it was better than Apple. They claimed that the Mac was nothing more than a measly toy computer. Real men, they assured me, used real computers, meaning, naturally, Windows based computers. They would forever ask me: "is Apple still in business", or assure me that if it was, then "it was about to go out of business any day now!" How well I remember them singing and taunting me with Microsoft's little ad jingle: "Were do you want to go today?"
I found it rather interesting, however, that after reading many of the comments about this story on various other sites, that the general theme seemed to run along the line that: " it didn't mean a bloody thing; that market cap was meaningless; that Apple's stock was way, way overvalued and was heading for a big, big crash", etc., etc.
It seems funny now, but, I remember just how these people used to argue that Microsoft's past market cap only proved that they and their Windows computers were so much more superior than Macs and Apple, but I guess that times have changed and that having a bigger market cap only applies to everyone, of course, except Apple.
As far as Apple knocking Microsoft down to 2nd place goes, the New York Times published this interesting quote:
“It is the single most important turnaround that I have seen in Silicon Valley,” said Jim Breyer, a venture capitalist who has invested in some of the most successful technology companies."
Not only did the New York Times article point out how significant this was, but they also give a quote as to why it happened, on why Apple is now suddenly more valuable than Microsoft:
"Mr. Jobs helped create “the best desktop computer, the best portable music device, the best smartphone and also now the best tablet,” said Steve Perlman, a serial entrepreneur who was an executive at both Apple and Microsoft and is now the chief executive of OnLive, an online gaming company."
In conclusion, I knew, in my heart-of-hearts, that the day would eventually come when Apple would one day surpass Microsoft in size, power and influence. Truly, as said, this is one hell of a fantastic comeback, no matter how you slice or dice it. Nonetheless, it still seems a little unreal to me that Apple, who was once consider to be just as good as dead, has finally now surpassed its old nemesis, the once seemingly unstoppable Microsoft. It would have seemed impossible - virtually unthinkable in the past, but this is the present and the unthinkable has indeed happened -- Apple is # 1; Microsoft is now just #2!
And that's my 2 cents 4 this Thursday, May 27, 2010Gates & Jobs photos via: New York Times