Apple is catching up with the world's largest software company Microsoft in terms of market capitalization. With the phenomenal successes of its iPhone and iPod, Apple's shares have shot through the roof while Microsoft's are faltering as the company falls behind in the mobile platform market.
Apple's stocks closed at US$235 per share on Wall Street on Wednesday, the last day of March, up $25 so far this year and hitting 11 records in the past month alone. Apple's total market capitalization amounted to $210 billion this week when its iPad hit the market, becoming the third largest company in the U.S. just after Exxon Mobil and Microsoft.
In contrast, Microsoft stocks closed at $29.31 a share on Wednesday, down $1 so far this year. Its total market capitalization stood at $259.9 billion, down $7.4 billion compared to the end of 2009. Microsoft is still worth around $50 billion more than Apple, but that is minimal, analysts say, given that Microsoft was worth $586 billion in 2000 and Apple was only $17 billion.
IT consulting service Tech Launch projected Apple will overtake Microsoft in terms of market capitalization, when it successfully leads the tablet PC market with iPad, releases the new version of the iPhone this summer, and expands to services that include Verizon on top of At&T.