Apple’s iPhone 4S may have been taken as a disappointment to some, but Sterne Agee analyst Shaw Wu wrote on Wednesday that the iPhone is “still the best smartphone.” He singled out Siri, Apple’s new voice control software for the device, as the “key differentiator” for the device that sets it apart from competing smartphones.
In a research note to clients obtained by The Mac Observer, Mr. Wu wrote, “Other phones have had voice recognition for some time, but none have worked particularly well. We believe AAPL’s superior and more comprehensive implementation, including the ability to do many things including making phone calls and voice dictation as well as integration with apps, will allow for a much more pleasant and useful experience.”
He also said that the announcement of two new major carriers for the iPhone—Sprint in the U.S. and KDDI in Japan—was a big deal that got lost in the noise. “Together,” he wrote, “they expand iPhone’s market by 87 million subscribers (52 mm for Sprint and 34 mm for KDDI), nearly the size of AT&T.”
Mr. Wu reiterated his “Buy” rating on Apple’s stock and his price target of US$500.
Shares in AAPL closed higher on Wednesday, ending the day at $378.25, a gain of $5.75 (+1.54%), on volume of 28 million shares trading hands.
*In the interest of full disclosure, the author holds a tiny, almost insignificant share in AAPL stock that was not an influence in the creation of this article.