Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) is about ready to kick off its annual Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC), which is basically like summer camp for Apple geeks. The weeklong event begins Monday, and, as its name suggests, the conference is mainly geared toward software developers. But ordinary Apple fans and lots of reporters will be tuning in Monday at 1 p.m. ET for the big keynote address, when Apple is likely to make software and hardware announcements.
Monness’ top analyst Brian White expects an update to Apple’s four key platforms that include iOS, macOS, watchOS and tvOS. White wrote, “Given the importance of the iPhone to the Apple product family, new iOS innovations tend to get a fair amount of airtime at WWDC and we expect this will be true with iOS 12 next week. In light of the Cambridge Analytica fiasco, we wouldn’t be surprised if Tim Cook spends a couple of minutes reinforcing Apple’s commitment to protect customer privacy.”
Furthermore, “Given Apple’s growing support for AR with the unveiling of ARKit at last year’s WWDC, we expect the company to expand its AR capabilities […] Moreover, we believe improved functionality around Siri could be in the cards and we expect an update around Core ML for developers. Apple Pay usually gets some airtime at WWDC and The Information recently reported that Apple Pay could be extended beyond just payments. Apple Music is a topic we expect Apple to touch on at WWDC, along with HomeKit, CarPlay and more.”
Finally, “The Mac portfolio is no stranger to WWDC and last year the iMac was front and center. As such, we would not be surprised if the Mac portfolio gets some sort of refresh this year, combined with an update to macOS.”
Ahead of the big event, Monness reiterates a Buy rating on Apple shares, with a price target of $235, which implies an upside of 24% from current levels.
According to TipRanks.com, which measures analysts’ and bloggers’ success rate based on how their calls perform, 5 stars analyst Brian White has a yearly average return of 16.7% and a 69% success rate. White has a 23.8% average return when recommending AAPL, and is ranked #81 out of 4814 analysts.