Apple Takes Over Samsung as the Biggest Smartphone Maker: The World’s 10 Biggest Companies Revealed

In the new year, Apple surpassed Samsung, becoming the world’s largest smartphone maker for the first time in the last ten years.

Here, we have worked with City Index to reveal the world’s biggest companies today by market cap, and how the landscape of corporate giants has changed in the last 20 years. In an era rife with smartphones and AI, it’s no shock that technology dominated the stock market in 2023, with seven technology companies including Apple, Amazon and Tesla occupying the top 10.

Apple was the world’s biggest company in 2023 – worth $3.03 trillion, followed by Microsoft ($2.51 trillion). And in 2000, Microsoft was the world’s biggest company, worth $586 billion (equating to $1.03 trillion in 2023).

The top 10 biggest companies of today:

RankCompanyIndustryMarket cap (billion USD)
3Saudi AramcoOil & Gas$2,080.00
4Alphabet (Google)Technology$1,520.00
8Berkshire HathawayDiversified$753.13
9Meta (Facebook)Technology$733.11
10Taiwan Semiconductor ManufacturingTechnology$534.98

City Index can reveal that Apple is the most valuable company in history, having a market cap of $3.03 trillion

Apple was founded in 1976 and went public in 1980. Only in 2011 did it become the world’s most valuable company for the first time, with a value of $350 billion. It replaced ExxonMobil at the top.

It was the biggest company in the world for most of the 2010s, and in 2018 became the first US company to surpass $1 trillion in value. It then surpassed $2 trillion two years later. Currently, with its $3.03 trillion value, it accounts for 11% of the GDP of the US.

Microsoft was the second-biggest company in 2023, with a market cap of $2.51 trillion, thanks to its market-leading Microsoft Azure cloud computing services and its stake in OpenAI. However, the products that saw it dominate in 2000 – including Windows and Office – are still a big part of its revenues. Microsoft was also the world’s most valuable company in 2000, adjusted for inflation, it is worth over 3 times that today ($2.51 trillion).

The biggest companies in 2000:

RankCompanyIndustryMarket cap (billion USD)Market cap (inflation adj.)
2General ElectricDiversified$477.00$844.29
5Exxon MobilOil & Gas$260.00$460.20
7NTT DocomoTelecommunications$246.00$435.42
8Royal Dutch ShellOil & Gas$203.00$359.31

Much like today, Technology companies had prominence on the stock market in 2000. Companies like Microsoft, Cisco and Intel occupied half of the top 10, compared to only one (IBM) 20 years earlier. Only two Oil & Gas companies were in the top 10 in 2000, ExxonMobil and Royal Dutch Shell.

In 2000, Microsoft was top of the stock market, worth $586 billion ($1.03 trillion today) however, it was badly affected by the dot-com crash. By March 2001, its value had dropped to $258 billion, less than half of its peak. This was partly due to the ruling of the United States vs. Microsoft case, in which MSFT was found guilty of monopolisation.

However, in 2003, it became the biggest company in the world again, and the biggest tech company in the world up until Apple’s rise in the early 2010s. 

Charlotte Giver

Charlotte is the founder and editor-in-chief at Your Coffee Break magazine. She studied English Literature at Fairfield University in Connecticut whilst taking evening classes in journalism at MediaBistro in NYC. She then pursued a BA degree in Public Relations at Bournemouth University in the UK. With a background working in the PR industry in Los Angeles, Barcelona and London, Charlotte then moved on to launching Your Coffee Break from the YCB HQ in London’s Covent Garden and has been running the online magazine for the past 10 years. She is a mother, an avid reader, runner and puts a bit too much effort into perfecting her morning brew.