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A New Look At How Apple Should Spend All Of That Money

A New Look At How Apple Should Spend All Of That Money

August 17, 2012
If you’re an Apple investor, you’ve probably received your first dividend issued by the company in 17 years. Still, as we suggested earlier this week, the $10 billion in dividends Cupertino plans to disburse each year, at least through 2015, is insignificant when you compare it to the company’s growing stockpile of cash reserves. With this in mind, we take a second look at some of the ways Apple could spend some of the green.

Buy Netflix

In June, we suggested Apple should buy the popular video streaming company. We still believe that today, especially with talk of an Apple-powered television set-top heating up. A Netflix acquisition would make Cupertino a major player in the streaming video market, a place they so far have been slow to embrace. Additionally, Apple could use Netflix’s original programming arm to influence Hollywood more. Still, if this were to happen, Apple would be wise to dump Netflix’s DVD business, which the forward thinkers at Apple may consider too old school. Pros: Netflix’s streaming video service is everywhere, from iOS to DVD players to televisions. What a perfect way to offer significant programming on the rumored Apple set-top? Cons: Would Apple want to get into the DVD business too?

“Buy American”

In February 2011, Steve Jobs famously told President Obama that jobs lost to China “aren’t coming back.” With the American economy still not firing on all cylinders, perhaps the time has come for Tim Cook to change this thinking. We don’t expect Apple to suddenly shift their iPhone or iPad operations to the United States. Rather, Cupertino should dedicate their resources to making just one product here. For example, producing the rumored set-top box and/or the iTV in America would be a great starting point. By starting small, Apple could create American jobs without significantly disrupting their revenue stream. Then, if this proves successful, Apple could think about bringing more jobs stateside. Besides, if Google can produce their new tablet in the U.S., why can’t Apple? Finally, let us not forget that many of the parts used in Apple products are already produced here. Pros: Would be seen as a leader in bringing high tech manufacturing jobs to the U.S. Cons: Washington must first agree to eliminate some of the barriers of trade that forced many companies to shift jobs overseas in the first place.

Purchase a wireless company


Apple is already said to be thinking about creating, or buy an existing, cellular company. Earlier this month, in fact, rumors suggested that Sprint could be Apple’s target. Were Apple to purchase all or part of the nation’s third-largest carrier, it could prove to be a huge game changer. We say to Apple: Make the purchase! Pros: Would give Apple existing locations to sell their new service. Cons: On this, starting fresh might be a better direction to take.

Think Bold

At last count, Apple has upwards to $117 billion sitting in reserve. With this amount of money, Apple could make a play for one or many of technology’s biggest players, excluding Google and Microsoft. Among the companies Apple should consider acquiring are Adobe, Yahoo!, or even Facebook. Our dream pick would be none other than Samsung, Cupertino’s frenemy. Would government regulators allow such an acquisition? Probably not. Still, wouldn’t it be interesting if they did? For more ideas, be sure to check out our previous report, which included the suggestion that Apple should buy Twitter, a car company, and more. Do you have ideas how Apple should spend their vast resources?  

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