Thank you, Tim Cook, for not being able to build a decent supply chain of Apple products. The news media is having a field day and Wall Street believes every word of it. Samsung can supply tens of millions of its smartphones to consumers without a sweat, but Apple struggles. With loss of innovation and a poor supply chain, there's only one direction for Apple to go and that's down.
While some of the problem seems to be QA issues, you do not build a supply chain to handle peak demand - you build it for average demand. Otherwise when demand declines or near the end of a model life, you're stuck with tons of expensive unused capacity, even if it's a third-party contractor. Just as it always has, this will all settle down by another eight weeks. From a marketing perspective, it works very well - inability to get a phone creates demand for it.
While it is frustrating to have to wait (I'm waiting to buy as well), the demand is unprecedented. I've posted the following many times before, so I won't post all the details, but it's taken most consumer products a year or more to reach sales of one million units. Apple now does this regularly in a few days of releasing a new product.
The one thing I will agree with you on is that Apple's stock has been heading down because of Wall Street reaction to Apple's supply problems. But I think it will come back up with the next earnings report.
But Apple itself heading down? That's absurdity. By many measures, it's the most successful consumer products company in the world. And even its current cruddy stock price is 55% above its 52 week low. Name one other company that's accomplished that. Apple stores are consistently PACKED with people. And while many are only tire kicking or checking their email, it shows the level of interest in Apple products. In spite of the mixed reviews, I couldn't get near the iPad Mini table in the Grand Central Terminal Apple store earlier today and all the comments I heard from people who checked it out were very positive. Meanwhile, the Microsoft store in Times Square was empty when I passed by yesterday.