By numbers – Apple vs Microsoft

The world’s two biggest tech firms, laid bare on the altar of numbers as an offering to the god of stats...$222bn is the current value of Apple, accor

The world’s two biggest tech firms, laid bare on the altar of numbers as an offering to the god of stats...

$222bn is the current value of Apple, according to investors. This Wednesday, with shares perhaps buoyed by the iPad launch, it surged ahead of arch-rival Microsoft, making it the biggest tech company in the world. For now.

$219bn is the value placed on Microsoft by investors this week. So it’s not far behind at all. In fact...

$14.6bn was Microsoft’s most recent annual net profit, compared to...

$5.7bn for everyone’s favourite Cupertino-based iPod maker. So Apple still has a long way to go to catch up with Steve Ballmer and co.

1989 was the last time Apple was bigger than Microsoft. But the then Bill Gates-led Microsoft grew at an amazing rate during the 1990s, mainly due to the popularity of Windows, while Apple floundered and almost went out of business.

90 percent - the approximate amount of the world’s computers that run on Windows.

2001 - the year that Apple’s fortunes changed with the launch of the iPod. A few short years later, and the company has gone from niche computer manufacturer to the world’s biggest tech company - and it has the iPod (and Steve Jobs’ return to the fold) to thank for it.