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Tim Cook's Time To Shine

(October 3, 2011)

"Apple's iPhone Event On October 4"

Tim Cook finally gets his chance to stride out from under Steve Jobs' shadow, and he could not have picked a better time or device to mark his unofficial debut as Apple Inc's CEO. The latest generation of the iPhone -- still the smartphone industry's gold standard after four years -- is expected to see the light of day this Tuesday, just in time for the holidays.

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Tim Cook's Time To Shine

Even in a dismal economy, consumers should again line up in droves for a souped-up device that also marks Cook's first major product launch since taking over from Jobs in August. The so-called iPhone 5 is widely expected to have a bigger touchscreen and faster processor than the current iPhone 4, which helped the company stay a step ahead of rivals in an increasingly competitive smartphone market.

Its challenge will be to "wow" consumers with yet more game-changing innovations and top itself. The aging iPhone 4 is still an unqualified blockbuster: with more than 20 million sold in the third quarter that ended June 25 alone, it is likely to become the world's top-selling smartphone.

"Consumers view Apple products as a must-have," said Channing Smith, co-manager of the Capital Advisors Growth Fund, which owns Apple shares. "Apple phones and products have become almost a necessity. We don't expect them to falter."

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