When it comes to stock performance, Apple’s 2017 could come down to how well received its next iPhone will be.
That’s the word from analysts this week who shared some thoughts on whether Apple’s next flagship iPhone, believed to be known as the iPhone 8, could be as popular as some market researchers say. At least one analyst this week thinks the hype surrounding Apple’s rumored handset, which could come with a curved screen and all-new design, might not be so popular. Others, however, are bullish on the handset’s prospects, and now, Apple’s shares have regained some popularity.
Meanwhile, there was other big news surrounding Apple this week, including talk of the company’s AirPods, what its plans might be for its upcoming Apple Watch, and much more.
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Read on for all that and more in this week’s Apple news roundup:
- Apple’s shares have been soaring over the last several months in anticipation of Apple’s next iPhone, a report this week says. Since mid-November, Apple’s shares have jumped by 15%, and since May of last year, they’re up 36%. While that’s still down 8% from a high in February 2015, Wall Street is betting that the company’s 10th anniversary iPhone will be a major hit that will send sales soaring.
- However, not everyone is so sure. In a note to investors this week, Barclays analyst Mark Moskowitz downgraded Apple’s stock to equal weight. He told investors that Apple’s next high-end handset will unlikely be able to overcoming the smartphone market’s challenges. He added that the handset has been over-hyped and he’s “skeptical of a meaningful growth rebound manifesting later this year.”
- Are big changes coming to the Apple Watch? This week, Apple secured a patent on a technology that would add modularity to the wearable’s band. Rather than a standard band, the Apple Watch could come with components that would sit on the wrist and extend its functionality. The components could include a camera, a touch display, and more.
- Apple was sued this week by artist Jerome Lawson of The Persuasions. Lawson accused Apple of violating his “right of publicity” by including a Jamie xx song called “I Know There’s Gonna Be (Good Times)” in a 2015 iPhone 6 commercial. That song used The Persuasions’ 1971 song “Good Times” for part of its recording. Apple has yet to respond to the lawsuit. Lawson is hoping to win as little as $10 million in damages.
- Apple this week joined the Partnership on Artificial Intelligence, a not-for-profit group that attempts to spread the message that artificial intelligence can be used for societal good. Several other major technology companies, including Amazon and Google, are also part of the group.
- Apple this week hired Greg Duffy, co-founder of the Internet-connected security camera company Dropcam. It’s unclear what he’ll be doing at Apple, but given his work in the connected home market, it’s possible he might be helping Apple in its reported efforts in that space.
- Apple and Fitbit dominated the wearables market over the holidays, new data from market tracker Kantar Worldpanel ComTech shows. Apple was the world’s top smartwatch seller with 50% market share, topping Samsung at 17.4% share. On the fitness side, Fitbit reigned supreme with 75% market share.
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One more thing…Apple will make it easier for you to find your lost AirPods. The company has debuted an update to its Find My iPhone app that will locate your AirPods earpieces in the event you lost them. It should be available in iOS 10.3.