“Apple has set the bar incredibly high over the past decade. The expectations have some fans grumbling about the lack of transformational products during recent launches. The company has largely upgraded existing product lines instead of releasing anything as revolutionary as its last huge category changer in 2010, the iPad,” Kurt Badenhausen reports for Forbes. “Speculation swirls about whether the Cupertino, Calif.-based company has peaked, with well-funded competitors like Samsung and Google also challenging Apple. Wall Street seems to think so — Apple’s stock plummeted 45% from its September 2012 high before partially recovering in the past six months.”

“But Forbes’ study of the top brands illustrates that the Apple name is as strong as ever,” Badenhausen reports. “Apple is the most valuable brand in the world for a third straight time at $104.3 billion, up 20% over last year. It is worth nearly twice as much as any other brand on the planet by our count.”

The Top 15 ($ in billions):
1. Apple, $104.3
2. Microsoft, $56.7
3. Coca-Cola, $54.9
4. IBM, $50.7
5. Google, $47.3
6. McDonald’s, $39.4
7. General Electric, $34.2
8. Intel, $30.9
9. Samsung, $29.5
10. Louis Vuitton, $28.4
11. BMW, $27.9
12. Cisco, $27.0
13. Oracle, $26.9
14. Toyota, $25.6
15. AT&T, $24.2

Read more in the full article, and see the full list, here.

[Thanks to MacDailyNews Reader "Fred Mertz" for the heads up.]