(New York) Microsoft briefly dethroned its competitor Apple as the world’s largest market capitalization on Thursday, illustrating the contrast between a group driven by artificial intelligence (AI) and another whose iPhone sales are worrying.

Around 9:36 a.m., the creator of the Windows operating system reached a valuation of $2,899 billion on Wall Street, when Apple was at $2,896 billion at the same time, according to calculations by AFP.

But the overtaking only lasted a few seconds, before Microsoft returned to the runner-up position.

Around 1:50 p.m., Apple (-0.77%) had a market value of $2,874 billion, compared to Microsoft’s $2,853 (-0.29%).

Since the launch of the so-called generative AI interface ChatGPT in early November 2022, Microsoft shares have gained nearly 75%. At the same time, the Apple firm had to settle for a 35% increase.

The Redmond (Washington State) group is riding the momentum of AI and its partnership with OpenAI, creator of ChatGPT, of which it controls nearly half of the capital.

Since the arrival of ChatGPT, Microsoft has launched several products allowing businesses and individuals to use the capabilities of generative AI, notably via its Bing search engine or the Copilot virtual assistant.

At the beginning of January, an analyst from Barclays bank lowered his recommendation on the stock, concerned about a slowdown in iPhone 15 sales, particularly in China, a major market for Apple.

On Wednesday, analysts at Redburn Atlantic, in turn, revised their opinion to “neutral” after having previously been at buy, fearing limited growth in the years to come and mixed results for the quarter. in progress.

Since January 2022, Apple has repeatedly exceeded the symbolic threshold of $3,000 billion in capitalization.

But the group regularly carries out massive share buybacks and cancels the securities once they are in its possession, which mechanically reduces the number of shares in circulation and the market capitalization.