Is the iPhone no longer cool? That's the big question many are asking, after a surprise drop in sales.
Apple (AAPL) stock briefly fell below $500 per share Monday morning on news that iPhone sales are slowing, a sharp drop from its $700 share price last summer.
The Wall Street Journal reports Apple is reducing orders for iPhone internal parts as sales slump.
Apple is not commenting on the reports, but Bloomberg News reports that Apple is facing sharp competition from Samsung and other smartphone producers, who are turning out cheaper and slicker phones.
Are Teens Moving On?
The fickle 16-to 20-year-old age group, which helped the iPhone become a smash hit over the last five years, may be moving on, according to some reports.
Many teens now look at the iPhone as their mom and dad's phone, like a minivan or big SUV.
And the marketing agency Buzz Marketing Group says Apple is no longer connecting with young Millennial kids (teens), who are suddenly enamored by the Samsung Galaxy line of phones, and even Microsoft's new Surface Tablet.
Most teens may not be able to afford a Surface Tablet, and their parents may have no interest in learning Windows 8, but these latest reports are great news to troubled Microsoft: The next generation of shoppers may find Microsoft and Samsung more "cool" than Apple. At least this month.
The Samsung Galaxy S-III and its giant Note phones are suddenly all the rage with the young set, leaving the iPhone 5 looking a bit stale, according to a number of reports.
All this could be one reason Apple is reportedly rushing to produce an iPhone 5S, and is working on an iPad Mini Phone , as larger, 5-inch phones appear to be the next big thing.
As always, don't waste your money
Don't Waste Your Money is a registered trademark of the EW Scripps Co.
"Like" John Matarese on Facebook
Follow John on Twitter (@DWYM)