How Apple’s $1 Trillion Dollar Market Cap Stacks Up Against Other Fortune 500s
Thursday marked the first time in history that a publicly traded company—or any company for that matter—crossed the $1 trillion valuation threshold, which is exactly what Apple did when its shares climbed 3 percent to close at $207.39 per share. Those gains came a few days after the Cupertino-based iPhone maker announced its latest quarterly results, which showed the latest in a series of exceptionally profitable quarters.
The trillion-dollar mark for Apple is a far cry from where the company was just over two decades ago, when it was, as Steve Jobs once recalled, maybe 90 days from going bankrupt. But, in the 21-plus years since Apple decided to purchase the tech firm Next, bringing its fired former CEO and founder back into the mix, the company has been on an absolute tear. Once back at the helm, Jobs decided to slash more than half of the company’s product plans in an effort to focus on simplicity in their products, which became Apple’s guiding light.
Breaking from the personal computing mold, Apple ventured into the realms of personal audio with the launch of the iPod in 2001, to the revolutionary iPhone in 2007, to the iPad in 2010, and the Apple Watch in 2015. Along the way, and despite the tragedy of losing Jobs to pancreatic cancer in 2011, Apple has remained committed to its mission, and its built a global tech empire.
The strategy today remains centered on producing those same beautiful, awe-inspiring products that consumers crave. But there’s an ever-increasing importance and emphasis being placed on services—from Apple Music to Apple Care—which some analysts predict could be a $50 billion business for the company in a year’s time. And there’s always public pressure for Apple to develop the “next best thing”; some product that will do to the tech world what the iPhone once did. That may come in the form of smart glasses, or some self-driving car, or some other tech that we can’t even possibly imagine.
Until then, we have but the figment of what $1 trillion looks like. And, thanks to some crafty work by The New York Times using market cap data from Thompson Reuters, we have some really cool data visualizations to keep us busy. The interactive article is worth digging through, but here are some of the highlights that show just how big Apple has become.