iPhones & The Crown

At Counterpoint, we track the devices and technologies which are increasingly central to our lives – case in point – smartphones which also happen to be a $300 Billion+ per year industry from hardware revenues perspective alone. The apps, services, networks, advertising and other opportunities the smartphone drives on top of the hardware makes the broader sector worth more than a trillion dollars per year.

Companies such as Nokia, Qualcomm and others provided a strong foundation for the smartphone opportunity to be built upon. But it took the iconic Apple iPhone, launched by Steve Jobs, to drive the form-factor and app revolution from the summer of 2007.

It has been more than a decade since iPhone was announced and in the last five years it has consistently been the best-selling smartphone globally.

Since 2007 the iPhone alone has generated more than $600 billion in revenues for Apple. While the changes to the iPhone’s design, its hardware, software and UX have been either incremental or more fundamental, with each ‘tick-tock’ upgrade cycle. However this has not stopped the iPhone being one of the most-expensive (premium) and the best-selling smartphone on the planet. being one of the most-expensive (premium) and the best-selling smartphone on the planet.
The iPhone 6 ‘tick’ upgrade cycle took Apple to its peak, whereas the iPhone 6s ‘tock’ upgrade achieved only a relatively soft sales uplift. Nevertheless, the 6s series kept the iPhone as the best-selling smartphone globally successfully taking the baton from its most popular predecessor. Samsung’s Galaxy flagship the S series was the world’s second most sold flagship series though almost 3x behind Apple’s iPhone when compared with the launch months.

All eyes are on the upcoming iPhone 7. Even if the upgrades will likely be an unprecedented further ‘tock’, they should be enough to engage the interest of users of older iPhone series around the world, many of which are still using two to three year old devices and looking to upgrade to the latest iPhone which would be more than 10x improvement in performance and features.

As a consequence, we will continue to see Apple iPhone keep the crown of the best-selling smartphone in the world over the next twelve months though challenges in some key markets such as ChinaIndiaLatin America will remain from players such as Huawei, Oppo and Samsung bringing cutting edge tech such as dual camera, fast-charging, AMOLED curved displays and so forth faster to market.

iPhones & The Crown - iPhone Himalayas