this week, holder of the first virtual version of its Worldwide Developers Conference, an annual event that began in 1987. This year’s edition starts with the Apple CEO Tim Cook’s keynote on Monday at 10 a.m., Pacific time.
This year, the WWDC is mostly a prelude to the bigger event later this year—the launch of the first iphone 5G. Apple (ticker: AAPL) typically announces new phones and other devices in the fall. It uses the WWDC for a glimpse into the future of software in the overall ecosystem. It is a great day for all the developers who create iPhone and Mac applications.
The research firm Sensor Tower estimates of Apple’s App Store has generated $15.8 billion in revenues during the quarter, up 30% from a year ago. Consumers stuck at home are using the platform to spend more than ever on applications, subscriptions, and other entertainment.
Last week, the European Union has launched an investigation of the App Store, with European Commission Vice-President Executive, Margrethe Vestager affirming the need to “ensure that Apple’s rules do not distort competition in the markets where Apple is in competition with other application developers.” The stacking
(MSFT) Chairman Brad Smith called for regulators to take a look at “the nature of the app store, the rules that are put in place, the prices and the tolls that are extracted, and if there is really a justification in antitrust law for everything that has been created.”
CEO Tim Cook is unlikely to weigh in on the debate next week, but he could use his speech to remind the developers of Apple about their importance to the company. Often, it highlights how the developers have made through the App Store, and this point could be highlighted at WWDC.
Last week, in fact, Apple has announced a new study showing that the App Store ecosystem supported $519 billion dollars in billings and sales in 2019 alone. The study casts a wide net and includes applications such as ride-sharing and the delivery of food, in addition to in-app ads and the sale of physical goods via apps.
Daniel Lin, senior technology research analyst at Neuberger Berman, an investment firm owned more than $ 1.2 billion worth of Apple stock at 31 March still sees a crucial role for Apple developers.
Lin points out that applications usually differentiate between Apple products. “Apple Watch has been considered by the market as DOA when it launched in 2015”, he said, but the watch has gained traction as Apple has adjusted its strategy and has shot to new fitness and health care applications.
Analyst of Wedbush Dan Ives expects to see a preview of the iOS 14—the next generation of iPhone software, including the new virtual reality features—during the Monday event. And although the event is likely to be primarily software focused, there are reports that Apple will unveil a plan of transition in its Mac line of products
chip processors designed in-house.
Friday, Jefferies analyst Kyle McNealy has joined the parade of Wall Street analysts increasing their expectations for Apple, which is now worth $1.5 trillion dollars, or $350 per share. He reiterated his buy rating and lifted its price target to $405 from $370, on high hopes for the launch of the iPhone 5G. But Apple stock was agitated on the Friday afternoon and finished the day down after Apple has decided to close 11 stores in four states due to a peak of Covid-19-case basis. It was a weekend to remember that, even for Apple, the world is nowhere back to normal.
Write to Eric J. Savitz at [email protected]