When Apple announced the first drop in iPhone sales since the gadget first premiered in 2007, you would have thought the company was in deep trouble. Predictably, the stock price dropped, even though Apple remained highly profitable, and had total revenues to die for. It didn’t help that sales for the iPad continued to fall and Mac sales were relatively flat.
I won’t dwell on the fact that Amazon, a Wall Street darling, seldom delivers large profits and has had many years of red ink. Tesla? Don’t get me started! Apple lives in a universe all its own, it seems, and it must deliver endless growth for the rest of time or risk being declared irrelevant. It must answer to a higher standard.
Now if it were 20 years ago, the critics might have had a point. In the previous year, the then-beleaguered company acquired NeXT, Inc., a firm founded by Steve Jobs, which had delivered a working industrial strength operating system. Apple couldn’t build one of their own, despite trying for several years, and thus went shopping in a fairly public way for someone else’s.