On Monday, Apple Inc (NASDAQ:AAPL) held its World Wide Developer’s Conference (WWDC) 2021 keynote event. Although aimed at software developers, the annual WWDC keynote has had some memorable new product launches in the past. Apple watchers were hoping to see something exciting on Monday — new MacBook Pros, new AirPods, and maybe a hint about AR glasses or the Apple car project. No such luck. The WWDC 2021 keynote was all about Apple software and services. There were some interesting developments, but nothing to immediately move the needle on AAPL stock. In fact, the market yawned in response. AAPL closed Monday up one penny.
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However, the lack of new hardware or future product hints at WWDC 2021 means one thing: they will be coming in the future. In the case of new MacBook Pros or AirPods, that will be later this year. Along with the iPhone 13 series, and the latest Apple Watch. As for AR glasses and the Apple car, it could be another year or two. All of which brings up the question of whether now would be the time to add some AAPL stock to your portfolio. After all, it is still down so far in 2021.
AAPL Stock and WWDC 2021
At previous WWDC events, Apple has announced, launched or shown off game-changing hardware. The company’s new custom M1 processor that’s shaking up the PC world? That was first announced at last year’s WWDC. Apple chose WWDC 2017 to launch the HomePod, its first smart speaker, along with a hotly anticipated iMac Pro. The company introduced its Apple Music streaming service at WWDC 2015. WWDC 2013 saw a slew of new Mac hardware, including the radical, cylindrical Mac Pro. The iPhone 4 was launched at WWDC 2010.
You get the picture. Past WWDC events have often included key product reveals.
This year, not so much. The focus was firmly on the upcoming versions of its various operating systems. That would be iOS 15, macOS Monterey, watchOS 8, and tvOS 15.
Highlights included the ability to use Apple’s noise-cancelling AirPods as low-powered hearing aids, a free upgrade to Apple Music that includes lossless and spatial audio, more privacy features in iOS, walking steadiness tracking and health data sharing features for the Health app, Siri improvements, the ability of the Wallet app to store government ID including drivers’ licences, an Android version of FaceTime and the ability to seamlessly use an iPad as a second Mac monitor.
All good stuff, and all bound to make Apple products more compelling. But far from Earth-shattering.
If you’re interested in seeing more, here’s Apple’s recap and video of the keynote.
What One Analyst Thinks of AAPL Stock’s Short-Term Prospects
On June 3 — just before Apple’s latest event — BofA Securities released a research note on Apple. The company sees plenty to like about Apple’s current situation, including a strong 5G upgrade cycle, improved margins thanks to a better mix of higher end iPhones plus lower memory costs, and the expected pandemic recovery in emerging markets.
However, BofA also identified potential risks that could impact the company. These include trade conflicts and tariffs, a stronger U.S. dollar, ongoing Covid-19 issues, longer iPhone replacement cycles, commoditization of smartphones, rising material costs for Apple products and increasing competition in the tablet market.
BofA maintains a “Neutral” rating on AAPL stock, but its $160 price target offers a 26% upside.
Bottom Line on AAPL Stock
WWDC may have been lacking in fireworks. There were no big product reveals that would have people running out to buy AAPL stock.
However, it did provide assurance that the company is continuing to hone the software that powers Apple hardware. It continues to work hard at making its products best-in-class and is tying them even more closely together (along with paid services that add value). These are moves that support continued, long-term growth. We’ll see more new hardware in 2021 — guaranteed — including the iPhone 13. Bottom line: the company is marching inexorably toward an astounding $3 trillion market cap.
And when the company finally decides to lift the lid on its big ticket secret project like Apple car? The current price of this Portfolio Grader “B” rated stock is likely to seem like a steal in hindsight.
On the date of publication, neither Louis Navellier nor the InvestorPlace Research Staff member primarily responsible for this article held (either directly or indirectly) any positions in the securities mentioned in this article.
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