NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- Apple (AAPL) didn't wow investors with a new device at its Worldwide Developer Conference Monday -- despite chatter from a key SVP last week that the company's pipeline is the best in 25 years. But Apple did come out swinging against nearly all other tech titans, namely Google (GOOG), Microsoft (MSFT), Facebook (FB), Hewlett-Packard (HPQ) and Amazon (AMZN). It even took on smaller planning-to-IPO companies like Dropbox.
The stock dropped more than 1% after the conference on disappointment about lack of hardware news.
However, the lack of new devices didn't mean that Apple wasn't taking on the competition. Tim Cook and Co. seemed to want a piece of everybody -- and they kicked off the conference with an easy dig at PC makers that run Windows.
Cook bragged that millions more developers are working on Apple's Mavericks operating system than Windows 8, despite Windows' release nearly a year earlier. He also noted that Apple's share of the PC market is growing even as the industry declines. (Gartner came out earlier this year with figures showing that Macs have 13.7% of the PC market while market leader HP has 26.5%).
The comments provoked some laughter among the techie crowd, but didn't impress investors. Folks on StockTwits.com largely saw Cook's comments as akin to the school soccer star picking on the skinny kids in the corner -- even though, in the case of Microsoft, that kid does happen to be worth $336 billion. When it comes to developer adoption, Apple should compare its operating system to Google's tougher -- and smartphone dominant -- Chrome.
Apple quickly turned its attention to attacking Google. Cook and his wingman Craig Federighi -- Apple's senior vice president of Software Engineering (whose good looks and rapport with the crowd reminded a bit of Apple's much-missed founder Steve Jobs) -- said that Droid phone users are unhappy with their software and don't even bother to update it.
The pair then highlighted Apple's 97% customer satisfaction rate with IOS and the 800 million IOS devices sold. And they promised that the new version of IOS 8 would win even more converts to Apple with a suite of features that allow users to seamlessly move from Apple devices, turn their iPads and Macs into phones, and deal with messages and alerts without interrupting whatever app experience they're involved in.
Investors on StockTwits.com were largely impressed with Apple's smartphone operating system and its new Yosemite Mac OS. They said the seamlessness with which the operating systems allow Apple devices to interact would boost sales.
However, Apple will have to convert a lot of Droid users to be No. 1 again. More than 226 million Droid devices shipped in the last quarter of 2013, according to research firm IDC. Only 51 million IOS devices shipped in the same quarter.
Apple also took on Google -- not to mention Amazon and Dropbox -- with more robust cloud services. Apple undercut prevailing cloud storage prices by announcing it would offer 5 gigabytes of cloud storage a month for free, and 20 gigabytes of cloud storage for 99 cents a month. It also will allow users to send large files to each other for free via its cloud service, in the same way that Dropbox does.
$AAPL Seems like iCloud Drive is my reason to abandon Google Drive...if it is as good.? Robert Lewis (@Zentemple) Jun. 2 at 03:36 PM
Apple also took on all the programming languages out there with the unveiling of a new coding language called "Swift." Apple promised the language would enable developers to code faster with fewer opportunities for mistakes.
Despite Apple taking on all the competition, investors remained largely unimpressed.
$AAPL like a realtor, overpromise, underdeliver? Satish Mathan (@smathan75) Jun. 2 at 02:59 PM
$AAPL Everything apple announced today seems defensive to ecosystem. Nothing new frontier.? Alex K (@AKEB) Jun. 2 at 02:44 PM
But some said that the value of Apple's ecosystem would take time to bear out. Once investors had a chance to digest their disappointment over the lack of a new device, they would see the value in having a seamless Apple ecosystem that could make users of one Apple device swap all their tech for Apple products.
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At the time of publication, the author held no positions in any of the stocks mentioned.
This article represents the opinion of a contributor and not necessarily that of TheStreet or its editorial staff.