Apple unveils new VR headset, revamped MacBook and iOS 17 – as stock hits 43-year high


Apple shares hit their highest price in the stock’s 43-year history early Monday ahead of the debut of its mixed reality Vision Pro headset, though the stock then slid after the tech giant announced a far heftier than expected price tag for its biggest product launch in years.
Apple CEO Tim Cook stands next to the new Apple Vision Pro headset is displayed during the Apple Worldwide Developers Conference on June 05, 2023 in Cupertino. Image: Getty
Key Takeaways
  • The stock gained as much as 2.2% in morning and early afternoon trading, hitting as high as US$184.95, shattering its prior all-time high of US$182.94 achieved last January.
  • But the fanfare proved to be short-lived, as Apple shares slipped about 3% in later afternoon trading, closing below US$180, a 0.8% loss for the day.
  • The tumble came immediately after Apple CEO Tim Cook announced the company’s hotly anticipated headset will retail at US$3,499, nearly 20% higher than the US$3,000 price tag most experts predicted for the device ahead of the launch at Apple’s Worldwide Developers Conference.
  • Despite the Monday decline, shares of the Silicon Valley behemoth are still up some 44% in 2023, erasing its 27% slide last year and captaining tech’s broader rebound year-to-date.
  • Apple’s market capitalisation now sits at about US$2.8 trillion, about US$325 billion richer than the next most-valuable public company on the planet, Microsoft.
‘Largest MacBook Air Yet

Apple announced that its new 15-inch MacBook Air—the world’s thinnest 15-inch laptop, according to Apple—will be available starting next week, marking a middle-price point offering for the company that previously had a significant price difference between its smaller MacBooks and larger models.

  • The new model will weigh in at 3.3 pounds and come in four colours.
  • Bergeron said the laptop will have Apple’s M2 chip, making it 12 times faster than Intel-based MacBook Air; it is quoted at an 18-hour battery life.
  • The new model will start at US$1,299 and be available next week, while the 13-inch MacBook Air powered by the same chip will start at US$1,099; the 13-inch MacBook Air with an M1 chip—Apple’s older version—will drop below US$1,000, now priced at US$999.
The new Apple 15-inch Macbook Air is displayed during the Apple Worldwide Developers Conference. Image: Getty

In a Monday note to clients, Wedbush forecasted Apple will sell about 150,000 headsets for its first year on the market, which would be US$525 million in sales. This would be roughly 0.1% of Apple’s nearly US$400 billion in revenue last year.

Key Background

Apple has tacked on roughly US$765 billion in market cap this year, which is more than the total respective total valuations of Berkshire Hathaway, Meta and Tesla. Broad investor sentiments for mega-cap tech stocks have shifted dramatically from bearish to bullish over the last year, thanks in no small part to Apple’s top- and bottom-line beats during 2023’s first quarter.

Fuelling Apple’s strong financials was a record $20.9 billion in quarterly revenue from its services segment, which includes App Store sales and other non-product revenue streams. In a Sunday note to clients, Bank of America analysts Wamsi Mohan and Ruplu Bhattacharya, raised their price target for Apple by 8% to $190, citing significant upside in the company’s services segment thanks to the new headset.

Big Number

Nearly US$2 million. That’s how much a US$1,000 investment at Apple’s 1980 initial public offering—when shares traded at a split-adjusted level of $0.10—would be worth now.

Crucial Quote

In a note previewing Monday’s conference, Rosenblatt analyst Barton Crockett declared the “bar is set low” to excite investors considering “nobody expects this to be a financially meaningful product near-term.” Apple’s roughly US$80 billion market cap slip-up Monday afternoon suggests the company failed to beat the already dampened expectations.

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