Apple (NASDAQ: AAPL) stock made its biggest gains last week on Monday, opening at $124.47 and closing at $127.35. Share prices then dropped a bit during the middle of the week before receiving a slight bump on Friday, closing at $127.10. Friday also saw the heaviest trading, perhaps due to the apparent high demand for the Apple Watch.
Apple began taking pre-orders for the Apple Watch at 12:01 AM Pacific time on Friday. The highly anticipated wearable promptly ran out of supply and estimated shipping times were pushed back for all models. All of the Sport and Edition models are now estimated to ship in June, while about half of the
standard models (all 38mm display) are expected to ship in 4 - 6 weeks, with the rest shipping in June or even July. According to research firm Slice Intelligence, there were just under a million orders in the U.S. alone on Friday, with an average of 1.3 watches per order. Sales averaged $503.83 per watch and roughly 62% opted for the less expensive Sport model. The Apple Watch officially launches on April 24th.
In a note to investors on Friday, UBS analyst Steve Milunovich said he is bullish about the Apple Watch's long term prospects. He believes the Taptic Engine could prove to be a "digital sixth sense" that will be in high demand.Aside from the Apple Watch, there were a few other notable items from last week:
Despite a 1.2% decline in U.S. PC sales, Apple's market share grew 8.9% in Q1 FY2015. Apple is the third largest PC vendor in the U.S. behind HP and Dell, with Lenovo nipping at its heels.
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Disney is apparently pressuring Apple to include more of its channels, on top of its flagship ESPN and Disney channels, in Apple's upcoming streaming TV service. The service is expected to launch in the fall sometime, likely alongside the fourth generation Apple TV. It is expected to have around 25 channels and cost somewhere in the $30 to $40/month range.
For the second time this year, Sony has announced plans to boost its production capacity for its CMOS sensors, which are found in the iPhone. This pushes the company's total 2015 investment in facility upgrades to around $1.2 billion USD.
Apple Pay added another 39 banks and credit unions last week, bringing the total to over 180 institutions. You can see the full list here.