Traffic to the online store was four times that of Christmas 2005, with visitors experiencing 20 minute-long downloads of songs. Apple Computer stayed mum, but analysts connected the dots.

“What you’re seeing is the tremendous success of the iPod,” said Michael Gartenberg, vice president and research director with JupiterResearch. “No doubt it was a very, very popular gift, and no matter how well you plan on the server side of the equation, there are always times when you get caught short.”

It looks as if Apple Computer investors recognized the near-crash is a blessing in disguise. At first, AAPL stock took a serious dip, opening on Wall Street December 27th at about $7 less than its usual price of $83 per share. However, by December 29th, it was higher than ever.