Apple overtakes Google as top brand

SAN FRANCISCO — Apple Inc. moved up to the top spot in a global ranking of brand value this year, replacing Google Inc., which has become Apple’s arch-rival in the market for mobile operating systems.

In a study released Monday by Millward Brown, a market-research arm of London advertising giant WPP, Apple was listed as the world’s most valuable brand, with an estimated value of more than $153 billion. Millward Brown said its calculations are based on an analysis of financial data combined with “consumer measures of brand equity.”

The dollar value of Apple’s brand surged 84 percent from last year, helping the company vault to the top of the global rankings from its No. 3 spot last year, the study said.

Google’s brand value, meanwhile, slipped 2 percent to $111.5 billion. It’s now No 2. on the list.

Apple’s growth may have added some luster to the two wireless carriers that sell its popular iPhone in the U.S. AT&T Inc. jumped to the seventh most valuable brand from last year’s ranking of 22, while Verizon Wireless rose to 13th from 20th in the rankings.

Other tech-sector names on the list included Facebook, which debuted in 35th place with a brand value of $19.1 billion. Amazon.com Inc. saw its brand value jump 37 percent to $37.6 billion, placing it 14th in the global rankings.

Some other big tech companies saw the value of their brands diminish during the year, according to the study. Hewlett-Packard Co. saw its brand value slip 11 percent to $35.4 billion, sending it to 18th place, down from 12th.

Videogame maker Nintendo saw its brand value tumble 37 percent to $11.1 billion, according to the study.

The brand value of BlackBerry, the smartphone brand owned by Research In Motion Ltd., slid 20 percent to $24.6 billion, pushing it to 25th place from 14th.

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The Associated Press