Apple Preparing to Crush Competition Again (UPDATED)

UPDATED: And Apple crushed just about every metric it could in its fiscal year Q2 earnings report. TheStreet's tech editor Chris Ciaccia has details here. You can also access a live Apple earnings blog (which will be archived after the fact) HERE.

Quick numbers -- EPS of $11.62 on revenue of $45.6 billion with a gross margin of 39.3%. That last number, in particular, should put a lid on the concerns of quite a few critics. 

This article speculates on -- with links to background from previous columns -- what might lie ahead for Apple as we head into the most important six months of Tm Cook's tenure as CEO ... the second half of 2014. I'll hold off on the "I Told Ya Sos" till we get deeper into that timeframe.  

NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- With the exception of dealing with obvious neglect of his company's retail operation post-Ron Johnson, it must be pretty cool to be Tim Cook right now.

The man has the patience of Job. And, at times, he shows the pluck of Jobs:

I'm not sure how Cook stays focused. To maintain tight lips given what Apple's (AAPL) about to do in 2014. For goodness sake, I can hardly contain myself when I'm about to publish an article I'm fired up about. I often bean spill prior to publication at my Twitter feed. I'm so fired up about the real meat of this column (it's on Page Two) I can barely set the table for it.

Unlike rumor mongers in the media and hacks in Wall Street analyst dystopia, I do not and will not claim to know Apple's exact plans. But they're starting to look obvious. And the funny thing is there's absolutely nothing anybody, from Microsoft (MSFT) to Google (GOOG), can do about it. It has come to a point where they're helpless, functioning as pawns in a game where Apple dictates tone and pace.

We have already thoroughly covered the forthcoming Android killer, iPhone 6, in a series of articles:

Apple's iPhone 6 Will Demolish Android;

Call the Cops: Apple's About to Kill Android; and most recently

Load Up on Apple Stock as Android Killer Looms.

Even rumors that Apple might delay iPhone 6 until 2015 do not dampen my educated enthusiasm. In fact, rumblings that issues with suppliers have moved Apple off schedule embolden me. If the supplier can't get the state of the art battery or 5.5-inch display done the way Apple wants it, it's the Apple way to wait until it's right and ready. Apple works from a position of strength. It operates on its own timeline, not its copycats.

When iPhone 6 hits, it will satisfy the desires of fanboys (myself included), millions of Apple holdouts and new smartphone adopters, putting even more hurt on Android, particularly in the U.S.

But that's not even what I'm excited about ...

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