Eager smartphone consumers and investors who expected Apple Inc. to unveil its much-awaited iPhone 5 this afternoon were disappointed when the company debuted an updated version of the iPhone 4.
The first product unveiling since the resignation of Steve Jobs as Chief Executive Officer sent Apple stock below $360 a share from a day high over $380 a share.
The new iPhone 4S contains an A5 chip that works seven times faster than the old Apple 4 processor. The 4S also features voice recognition software, and an improved camera with 60 percent more pixels and the ability to handle high-definition video. A new “intelligent” antenna is designed to improve call quality, and the battery powers eight hours of talk time between charging.
“It’s the most amazing iPhone yet,” claims the company website, yet the consensus opinion outside the company is less enthusiastic about the new product.
Apple also demonstrated its iCloud service for storing information on remote servers that can be accessed though mobile devices and eliminates the need to sync up to a computer. The service will be available in mid-October.
Today’s announcement may help Apple sustain demand for its the year-old iPhone 4. According to Yahoo Finance, Apple has sold more than 20 million of the devices in its third fiscal quarter ending June 25th. The iPhone accounts for more than 40 percent of Apple sales and helped make Apple a dominant player in the consumer electronics industry. The company now rivals Exxon for the title of largest U.S. companies in terms of market capitalization.
At today’s unveiling the company said it was competing for the corporate market share held by Research in Motion and its Blackberry product, according to Yahoo Finance. More than 90 percent of Fortune 500 companies are testing or using its iPhones and iPads.
Apple currently enjoys dominance in the smartphone and tablet markets, yet faces ever-increasing competition from Android-based technologies. Mass Affluent investors surveyed by Millionaire Corner in June show marked preference for Apple computer tablets. Eighty-three percent of the Mass Affluent tablet users prefer the iPad to tablets running on Android or Windows system.
Mass Affluent smartphone users prefer the iPhone (39 percent), to the Android-based phones (29 percent) and Blackberries (27 percent). Mass Affluent investors are defined as having investable assets of $100,000 up to $1 million.