Apple

01/20/2015 7:00 am EST

Focus: STOCKS

David Fried

Editor, The Buyback Letter

Our top conservative stock for 2015 is the tech darling that makes the iPhone, iPad, and iPod, observes David Fried, editor of The Buyback Letter.

Apple (AAPL) creates products and services you didn't know you needed until you heard of them.

And once you heard, you wanted them. And once you had them, you continued to buy Apple products, keeping you busy in their ecosystem. Customer loyalty is unparalleled.

The future looks great. Apple has one of the most highly anticipated products of 2015 in its Apple Watch and analysts say wearable technology could be even bigger than smartphones.

An average user might download 100 apps (the average iPhone user has 64 apps). Why does that matter? Revenues from the App Store are surging. Billings rose 50% in 2014 and app developers took in $10 billion.

Mobile payments—the use of phones to complete transactions in stores instead of cash and physical card swipes—are expected to grow quickly, in part due to the growing popularity of Apple's new Apple Pay system. Of course, Apple will then have closer relationships with banks and retailers.

Apple has the most popular mobile camera and top individual camera of any type, as measured by Flickr, the large social photography sharing site.

Going forward in 2015, analysts note Apple is generating $200 billion in revenue, is able to grow earnings at 20%, with a cash position of about $145 billion (plenty available for buybacks).

Apple is still the dominant player in its space and it’s just starting to make inroads in e-commerce. Apple has repurchased 6.8% of its shares in the past 12 months.

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