Microsoft briefly tops Apple as most valuable company


Apple has been on a staggering trajectory in the decade since the iPhone was released, and in the process made Microsoft look like a technology company of the past. With this, the Cupertino-based tech giant ousted Microsoft from the number one in the list, becoming the largest US-based company. It was also the first time since 2013 that any company topped it, ever since Apple eclipsed Exxon Mobil size, according to an analysis of Bloomberg data.

Amazon and Google have both been top dog at different times, but yesterday's announcement of a market value for Microsoft of $813bn sees Satya Nadella's reborn company taking the lead for the first time since 2010, before dipping back down under Apple once more.

However, Microsoft's surge to the top spot was short-lived.

Apple shares have fallen more than 20 percent since the company reported earnings on November 1. The two companies emerged as leaders in the 1980s during the early days of the personal computer industry. Microsoft shares are down 8% from their September close.

But a turnaround began when the Redmond, Washington, company promoted Nadella as CEO in 2014.

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Amid a cloudy outlook for hardware sales, Apple has said it will step up focus on services business.

Microsoft posted a revenue of 29.1 billion dollars generated from their sales of Azure Cloud, gaming and Surface laptop portfolio. The company was the top cloud services provider for enterprises past year, ahead of Amazon, IBM and Google.

Being less reliant on consumer demand helped shield Microsoft from holiday season turbulence and U.S. Shares of Apple dropped 1.77 percent in extended trade after US President Donald Trump told Wall Street that tariffs can be imposed on mobile phones and laptops imported from China.

Technology shares have been punished in recent months on investor worries about rising interest rates and fallout from the trade conflict between the United States and China.