"Apple was in a league of its own. There was nothing that you traded against Apple," Kinahan said. "What this has done is made Apple just another stock - a great index stock of the tech industry. People can now use Apple in a pairs trade. Before, everyone was afraid to do it because Apple went straight up."
Yet the rebound Monday was a reminder that the company isn't going anywhere.
Instead, the relationship investors have with the stock may have changed for the long-term now that the meteoric rise appears to have run its course.
"Apple may become sort of a new-age value company for a while before the next great thing shows up, or if it shows up," said John Stoltzfus, chief market strategist at Oppenheimer. "In terms of whether Apple has seen its day as being a component of portfolios, it still has good upside potential. I don't think that era is over for it." (Read More: In Asia's Trend-Setting Cities, iPhone Fatigue Sets In)
The stock is heavily owned by mutual fund managers, with more than 1,000 having it as a top-10 component. Two-thirds of its shares are held by institutions.
So the drop from the September high could be at least in part due to simple portfolio rebalancing in which the stock more than tripled in value over a two-and-a-half year period.
Kinahan, of TD Ameritrade, said the shares could find support in the $425-$450 range, though they likely will remain a trading vehicle in lieu of another breakout.
"Apple now allows you to use it as a proxy for the tech industry overall in a way that's more affordable. The fear of the hyperbolic move to the upside has been taken away," he said. "So you're not going to have it go up $50 unexpectedly because the whole world is buying it for no apparent reason. It's trading for a reason now."