CUPERTINO, Calif., Aug. 18 (UPI) -- Apple products U.S. consumers have yet to see are bolstering stock values of the world's most valuable company, analysts say.
"We continue to believe that a smaller form factor iPad is indeed imminent," Barclays analyst Ben Reitzes said in a research note to investors.
While Apple has not introduced a smaller iPad that would compete directly with digital readers such as Amazon's Kindle Fire, Reitzes already expressed his confidence in the product, the Los Angeles Times reported Saturday.
"We believe that a smaller iPad will combine the ease of use expected of Apple products with high-performance hardware in a size that is more conducive as a companion device, remote, e-book or game player," he wrote.
The Wall Street Journal reported Peter Misek, a managing director at Jefferies, is placing his confidence in the next-generation iPhone, which he predicts will be "the biggest handset launch in history."
The iPhone 5 is expected to include a larger screen, a more sophisticated camera and faster processors, the Times reported.
The company's share value, meanwhile, is riding the crest of the product development rumors, pushing the company to record valuations.
Shares closed Friday at $648.11, a jump of nearly 2 percent on the day and a climb of 22 percent since May.
"In Apple's case, product launches have an inordinate impact. They have such a meticulous, product-focused extreme attention to detail that we haven't seen before in other companies," Misek said.
Other analysts are predicting Apple, famous for its secrecy in product development, is working hard to establish itself as a cutting-edge television company working to bridge the gap between the digital world and the television screen.
Apple has even admitted anticipation of improved new products cuts into sales of merchandise sitting on store shelves.
"Our weekly iPhone sales continue to be impacted by rumors and speculation regarding new products," Apple Chief Financial Officer Peter Oppenheimer said recently.
Apparently, however, Apple prefers the big, surprise launch fueled by rumors to early, reassuring revelations about what it has in the pipeline, as the company remains close-lipped about what it is planning to launch next.
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