Spain, and Italy -- were flat on their backs. Even Germany was very weak relative to the rest of the world. I do think it's interesting when Apple blows out earnings the bears say that it's completely disconnected from the rest of the market, but when it misses earnings they shout that it's going to take the whole market down. Guess that's just what happens when you're the biggest company in the world growing at Apple's rate. But let's clear up one misperception making the rounds after the results came out Tuesday: Apple has never missed estimates before. Really? Apple's last big "miss" like this was its fiscal Q4 2011 -- i.e., last October. This isn't unprecedented. At that time, Apple fell short as folks eased up on the throttle of iPhone buying, waiting for the 4S to be released. When the miss came out, the stock dropped from $422 to $392 a few days later -- a 7% decline. Yet, five weeks later, the stock got down to $363 amid the general market uncertainty (as well as lots of folks worrying that the quarter was a harbinger of more problems to come for Apple). This drop represented a 14% decline from its pre-earnings level. A 14% decline from Tuesday's close would take it down to $516. But, don't forget that, from late November ($363) to early April ($644), Apple's stock increased 77%. At least in this case, it was darkest before the dawn.
The big reason for the miss Tuesday was obviously iPhone sales, which came in at 27 million instead of the 30.5 that was the Wall Street consensus. As time goes on, it seems like many consumers are being conditioned to bunch their iPhone purchases just after it's released -- especially if Apple stays on its schedule of yearly releases in September or October. It's not good or bad; it's just the way it is now. Apple shareholders are still set up for big fall-season and holiday sales for iPhone 5. It's notable that the iPads did so well in Tuesday's results: 17 million were sold in the quarter (best ever). That represented a 44% sequential growth rate in units sold -- and we didn't even have any help from China to get to that number. The iPad 3 didn't start selling in mainland China until last Friday. It's worth remembering though that some of these iPad sales in the quarter announced Tuesday could have been to the channel to top up supply; that means we might see more weakness next quarter, especially as the focus goes to the smaller iPads. The bottom line here is that I still love Apple and still stand with my longer-term call of it going to $1,650 by end of 2015. However, it's quite possible we trade down to $500 over the rest of the summer. In my view, the next catalysts are all coming in the fall with the new iPhone (now rumored to be coming in September), a smaller iPad and then an announcement of TV (maybe not until 2013). Apple's stock has a history of big moves and then long periods of consolidation. I think we're going to be in a holding pattern for another couple of months after this. Although many people will be telling you to, I don't think you need to "buy the dip" today on Apple. At the time of publication, the author was long AAPL. This article is commentary by an independent contributor, separate from TheStreet's regular news coverage.