“By all accounts, it’s been a great first half of the year for Apple. Its stock price has been cresting along near its 52-week high, all changes in analyst coverage for the year thus far have been upgrades, and the company just announced that it is going international with its hot new iPod flavor, the Mini,” Eric Hellweg writes for CNN/Money.
“I hate to rain on a parade. But based on my research and a sampling of observer opinions I solicited for this article, I think some dark days lie ahead for the wizards of Cupertino,” Hellweg writes. “‘This is going to be a tough second half of the year for Apple,’ says Rob Enderle, principal analyst with the Enderle Group. ‘No matter where you look, it’s stormy clouds.'”
Hellweg laments Apple’s iMac delay, writing, “it means that Apple will not have new products on the shelf for the back-to-school shopping season.” Hellweg also writes that Apple’s in trouble, “because there’s a two-month waiting list to get the [iPod mini] in the United States. Apple’s competitors are ready to pounce, to put their own iPod-like devices into the hands of consumers who aren’t willing to wait for Apple to get on the stick.”
Hellweg goes on to wonder why Steve Jobs hasn’t appointed a “co-CEO to help him with the operational side of Apple so he could stick to the vision thing” and states that “Apple’s computer division is suffering from lack of operational stewardship and cultural malaise” brought on by the success of the iPod division.
Full article here.