Apple Inc‘s (NASDAQ:AAPL) recent $200 million acquisition of Seattle-based vendor Turi, its third artificial intelligence [AI]-related purchase in the last 12 months, may seem like a small deal compared with the multi-billion-dollar buyouts in recent years. However, Global Equities Research analyst Trip Chowdhry believes the acquisition is a smart move by Cupertino, which is clearly trying to boost artificial intelligence and machine learning [ML] capabilities in its products.
In an email to technology site eweek.com, the analyst said the deal “is solid and smart, and makes Apple Machine Learning the most comprehensive offering with machine learning models, algorithms-optimizations, and [the] developer ecosystem.” Chowdhry also said the merger could eventually create a $300 billion opportunity for Apple. In addition to that, the analyst noted that Cupertino is in prime position to cash in on this lucrative market given the fact Turi has a wide lead on the competition in terms of its computer learning developer ecosystem, which includes more than 40,000 data scientists and developers, far more than other companies.
Apple’s shift into AI and augmented reality [AR], which in all probability will be the next big things in technology as both categories will play a key role in next generation mobile experience, was discussed by Apple CEO Tim Cook during the company’s earnings call in July.
“We have been and continue to invest a lot in this,” Cook said. “We are high on AR for the long run, we think there’s great things for customers and a great commercial opportunity.”
With iPhone sales hit by stiff competition in China and the ongoing slowdown in the smartphone market, Apple shareholders certainly welcome the company’s increasing focus on machine learning and artificial intelligence as growth opportunities in years to come.
In Other Apple News
Maxim Group on Wednesday raised their Apple rating to ‘Buy’ with an $173 price target, noting the stock has a lot more upside that they expect will be realized over the next 90 days. The firm’s survey data supports the view that December quarter revenues will be up 15% year-over-year, 19% above current consensus. Maxim said they expect at least 15% more upside for Apple stock to materialize over the next three months.
Stock Price Action
With its stock above $108, Apple’s market capitalization stands at just under $585 billion. Shares have advanced 12.81% in the last 4 weeks and 17.10% in the past three months. Over the past 5 trading sessions the stock has gained 4.71%. The Cupertino, California-based company has a median Street price target of $120.00 with a high target of $185.00. Apple Inc. is down 7.17% year-over-year, compared with a 3.7% gain in the S&P 500. As for passive income investors, the company pays shareholders $2.28 per share annually in dividends, yielding 2.10 percent.