Apple (AAPL) closed at $701.91 today as investors pushed stock to a near all time high close on the eve of the iOS 6 release date and days ahead of the iPhone 5 release date.
Apple announced the iPhone 5, with 4G LTE, a thinner design and a larger 4-inch display on September 12th, and recently announced over 2 million pre-orders in the first 24 hours. The demand for the iPhone 5 is so great that users are now looking at waits into October to buy the iPhone 5.
In addition to the 2 million unit pre-order launch, Gene Munster with Piper Jaffray estimates that iPhone 5 sales will hit 8 million on release date weekend as consumers flock to Apple stores and other retailers to buy the iPhone 5 after standing in line for days in some areas.
iOS 6 delivers over 200 new features to the iPhone and iPad line, and is a free update to the iPhone, iPad and iPod Touch. This allows Apple to sell the iPhone 4S at $99 on contract and offer the iPhone 4 free with a two-year contract. Arguably offering one of the best smartphone values at multiple prices.
The iPhone 5 includes a new Lightning dock connector, and Apple is the primary source for new cables and the Lightning to 30-pin dock connector. In addition to the profit from iPhone 5 sales, expect Apple to make a good deal of cash on these $20 cables and $30 Lightning dock adapters.
The rise in stock price come as analysts reiterate a buy rating on AAPL stock and predict that it will break $1,000 per share. Apple dipped slightly in after hours trading, but is still above $700 per share.