While Apple bashing is a favorite pass time for many analysts, the fact remains that Apple still has a more proven track record of innovation and leadership in this field than its competitors. A couple of quarters of downtrend does not mean that the Apple story has changed decisively. Similarly, a few good quarters for Blackberry does not mean that they have won the battle already. Apple's brand strength and its ability to innovate cannot be discounted beyond a point. Since lack of confidence in its ability to maintain competitive advantage through innovation is the main reason for the stock going out of favor, fortunes may turn around pretty quickly if some new product is announced in the near future. While all are looking for the internal product pipeline of Apple, it is quite possible that the innovation is acquired from outside. With an obscene amount of cash, Apple can go scouting, albeit quietly, for innovative technologies and applications. Though this may sound a little strange, recently several smaller companies have claimed that their proprietary technology is responsible for success of bigger organizations. While Apple has been at the receiving end also, companies like Facebook, LinkedIn, Novell etc. are being sued by a subsidiary of Document Security System (NYSE:DSS) for hundreds of million of dollars. The interesting thing is that the DSS subsidiary owns the patent technology which is allegedly the “essence” of the Facebook experience. As per a report by the prophetic Analyst JP Moreno, “The complaint alleges that the Facebook website is built with the same infringing tools offered publicly to developers.” Thus smaller companies have been quietly responsible for innovations & technologies, many of them disruptive. Apple should not lose access to this talent. For the stock, however, the first step will be to get over the results. Investing before that will be gambling but, in the long term one can keep the faith after the stock settles down.