The past week, good and bad, belonged to Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL).
The week started with the fever pitch building to the expected release of the iPhone 5 — the unveiling of the newest in a line of iconic smartphones was one of the most widely anticipated product reveals for the company, and it was thought to be one of the most important.
What transpired Tuesday was a confusing end-around that defied most rumors in the prologue — the unveiling of the iPhone 4S, which contained all the features expected out of the iPhone 5, minus the all-important gap-up in number. Yet this small nuance was considered to be a flub by many, and it was joined by a truly laughable faux pas — the introduction of the ill-named voice-command app Siri, which flummoxed Japanese Internet searches for days.
All of this was rendered insignificant in scale Wednesday, when Apple co-founder and former CEO Steve Jobs died at age 56 after fighting a long battle against pancreatic cancer. While consumers lost the innovator that brought numerous game-changing gadgets to life, the business world suffered the loss of one of its greatest leaders.
The Next Thing In TV
A possible technological advancement that caught legs this week was indirectly tied to Steve Jobs — the next brainchild of his business rival, Bill Gates’ Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT), is a joining between a traditional video game console, streaming video and cable corporations.
This week, Microsoft announced some of its partners in its venture to provide television through its Xbox 360 game console, including cable giants Verizon (NYSE:VZ), Comcast (NASDAQ:CMCSA) and Time Warner (NYSE:TWX). Microsoft’s stock has answered in kind, up 5.46% in the past five days to finish the week at $26.25.
For now, the system is a hodgepodge of single channels and subscription services, but it threatens to become much more than just an accompanying streaming service to a mobile device — Xbox 360 could be the next set-top box.
Kodak Survives — For Now
On Monday, Eastman Kodak (NYSE:EK) shares rebounded after it dispelled rumors that it was filing for bankruptcy. But the once-great photography company is far from out of the water, its shares down almost 75% year-to-date, and with no end in sight to its problems. Traditional cameras are all but a thing of the past, and cheaper, lower-quality cameras are being left on shelves as smartphones’ cameras continue to improve, leaving only a market of high-end digital cameras to fight over.
It’s alive for now, but at $1.39 per share — up 25% from the start of the week — Kodak seems destined to become one of several iconic American companies heading the way of the dodo.
- Cree (NASDAQ:CREE): Up 5.88% ($1.55) to $27.91.
- Dish Network (NASDAQ:DISH): Up 4.47% ($1.12) to $26.18.
- Avis Budget (NASDAQ:CAR): Up 3.31% (34 cents) to $10.61.
- Sprint Nextel (NYSE:S): Down 19.93% (60 cents) to $2.41.
- Agilent Technologies (NYSE:A): Down 6.47% ($2.17) to $31.37.
- UBS (NYSE:UBS): Down 6.23% (75 cents) to $11.28.
As of this writing, Kyle Woodley did not own a position in any of the aforementioned stocks.