Mix: Mass market, AAPL, Podcasting, Sony players

“Apple is becoming a mass market company,” Merrill Lynch analyst Steven Milunovich said today. “The next perceptual change could be investor recognition that the company is building a sustainable consumer franchise. Although the current focus is music, look for Apple to go after video in the home with an emphasis on high definition.”

Shares of Apple surged today after the company reported its best quarterly profit ever and better than expected iPod sales. The company’s positive results also gave a boost to the companies that supply components for the iPod.

Daring Fireball’s John Gruber has written an interesting article on Apple’s fast adoption of podcasting, noting that speed was of the essence with incorporating the new technology into iTunes.

Sony has knocked Apple from the top spot of the flash-based MP3 player market in Japan with its new stylish devices. Sony’s share for flash memory players rose from 4 percent in March to 27 percent in June. Apple’s share with the iPod shuffle in Japan has fallen to under 20 percent.

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