Thursday, May 27, 2010
Apple surpasses Microsoft
A little over two months ago, when Bill Gates was toppled from his perch as the world's richest man, I suggested he'd be more upset when Microsoft was dethroned as the most valuable tech company in the world by Apple or Google. At that time, Apple's market capitalisation was about 20% lower than Microsoft's and Google was a further 7 or 8 percent adrift.
The switch happened yesterday. Apple overtook Microsoft on a day when the share price of both companies fell, but Microsoft's fell further. At the trading session's close, Apple's cap was a little over 222 billion dollars, and that of Microsoft around 219 billion.
To put things in perspective, a little over a decade ago, when Steve Ballmer took over as CEO of Microsoft and Steve Jobs returned to Apple, Apple had a market cap of $16 billion to Microsoft's $556 billion.
The company Bill Gates founded has been going through some turmoil, with a number of senior management figures leaving the company, and it seems unlikely its share price will recover sharply in the near future. Google, meanwhile, is having a lot of success with its Android mobile phone system, which could propel it to the number 2 spot sometime in the next twelve months.