SAN FRANCISCO — Apple reached a historic milestone Thursday, becoming the first American company to achieve a $1 trillion valuation.
"How do I begin to comprehend that number?" you may ask.
For starters, you can think of it as a million million. For $1 million you could buy a very nice one bedroom apartment in San Francisco. With $1 trillion, you could buy a very nice apartment for everybody in the city (San Francisco's population is close to a million).
Or you can think of it as a thousand billion. For $1 billion you could buy the Miami Marlins outright. For $1 trillion, however, you could buy the Marlins one thousand times over.
Although if you want to spend that much dough, you might want to write a check because there's just over a trillion dollars currently in circulation in the U.S.
What else in the world is there just a trillion of? Well, there may be one trillion species on the planet. That means Apple could give every species on earth one dollar, and it would take Apple CEO Tim Cook about 31,546 years to count each dollar bill.
Go back a billion seconds and you'd be in 1987. Go back a trillion seconds and you'd be around 30,000 B.C. Good luck trying to use your iPhone.
How much does a trillion dollars weigh? Well, one dollar bill weighs about one gram. So, one trillion dollar bills weigh one trillion grams. Convert grams to pounds and you're looking at about 2.2 billion pounds or over 630,000 mid-sized cars, of which you could purchase quite a few. (If the cars were an average price — say $20,000 each — you could buy all of them...385 times.)
What does a trillion dollars look like? Gizmodo made this handy illustration in 2009 using a computer modeling software. Spoiler: it's big.
How does a trillion dollars feel? You better ask Apple that question. While you're at it, ask what's next, a quadrillion?