SAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) – Apple Inc’s biggest success has become its biggest risk factor.
The iPhone revolutionized the smartphone industry, driving Apple’s expansion into Europe and China and, after just half a decade, yields about half its annual $100 billion revenue haul.
But the world’s most valuable technology company — which throughout the global recession near-unfailingly smashed Wall Street forecasts — is beginning to lose its aura of invincibility.
The company has missed Wall Street targets twice in under a year. CEO Tim Cook may now have to worry more about economic and product launch cycles, and the whims of fickle consumers.
Tuesday’s numbers also showed the impact of the economic slowdown in Europe on its sales, something a smaller, less-exposed Apple was able to dodge a few years ago.
“Apple is a little bit more vulnerable,” said Giri Cherukuri, head trader at OakBrook Investments. “There are chinks in their armor now.”
The reason for its vulnerability: its very success and size.
“When they were small enough, they could power through it,” Sterne Agee analyst Shaw Wu said. “Now it’s so pervasive that it’s a lot harder.”
The change in sentiment was evident in Cook’s
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