Apple 2.0

Covering the business that Steve Jobs built

The arc of Apple's growth

July 22, 2013: 6:52 PM ET

Horace Dediu's walks up to Tuesday's earnings report with a dazzling iPad slide show.

Padcast: Asymco.com

Padcast: Asymco.com

FORTUNE -- Of the nearly five dozen analyst's notes we gathered in advance of Apple's (AAPL) Q3 earnings report this afternoon, none were as colorful as Horace Dediu's.

The founder of Asymco.com presented his in the form of a "Padcast" -- a miniature, downloadable version of the kind of  iPad-based interactive slide presentations he has been taking on the road to sold-out conferences in Amsterdam, San Jose and Chicago.

The image above, from the last frame of the presentation, is the money shot: The jagged rise and fall of Apple's top and bottom lines.

There's an irony in that steep peak on the left-hand side of the chart. It represents the spike in earnings Apple registered after it released the iPhone 3G. It also coincided with the collapse of Lehman Brothers. So even as Apple's bottom line grew 150%, its stock tanked -- falling 40% before it finally began to recover in 2009.

Apple's recent 40% drop is a different story. It preceded two quarters of negative earnings growth in which Apple -- without a new breakthrough product and facing stiffening competition -- failed to keep up with the previous year's 100%+ growth.

With a forward P/E below 10, the stock is currently valued, as Dediu often points out, as if Apple's best years are behind it and its pipeline is empty.

If you have an iPad of relatively recent vintage, Pixxa's free Perspective App and $19.99, you can view Dediu's presentation here.

Link: Apple's 3Q FY13 Preview.

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About This Author
Philip Elmer-Dewitt
Philip Elmer-DeWitt
Editor, Apple 2.0, Fortune

Philip Elmer-DeWitt has been following Apple since 1982, first for Time Magazine, and now on the Web for Fortune.com.

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