2016 hasn’t been a very good year for Apple. That’s the case if you listen to the nattering nabobs of negativity who trot out their marketshare statistics as if Moses brought them down the mountain on tablets inscribed by the very handy of God. Critics decry Apple’s position in the industry relative to everyone else that makes a smartphone and declare Apple’s day is nearly done.
For a slightly different perspective I suggest you read Jeffrey Mincey’s missive ‘Apple And The Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Year‘ which, if you stop to look at basic facts vs. hysteria from lame stream media, you’ll see was a pretty good year for Apple and nobody else.
In fact, 2016 is so good for Apple and the iPhone that not one competitor anywhere on planet earth did as well.
I say that for two reasons.
First, a research guesstimate says Apple’s marketshare is a mere 12 percent vs. 88-percent for Android. Ipso facto and alakazam, Android wins and Apple’s iPhone loses. How accurate is that statistic?
As it turns out, not very. Only Apple divulges how many iPhones it sells, and every other number is a guesstimate because Apple’s competitors refuse to say how many smartphones they sell. What does that tell you? Additionally, the headline says ‘Android widens lead over iOS’ and lists guesstimates for smartphones and completely forgets the 40-million or so iPads Apple sells each year which also use iOS.
Second, if Apple is doing so poorly against all the competition that pushes Android OS onto an unsuspecting public, then how come Apple gets 104-percent of the entire smartphone industry’s profit in the most recent quarter?
Oh, by the way; that’s up from a mere 90-percent-ish last year.
How? I’m glad you asked. We’re back to research guesstimates again. Obviously, with 100-percent of the smartphone industry’s profits, nobody else was even close, and that includes Samsung, although their sliver of the pie might be attributed to their recent Galaxy Note 7 fire sale, but that’s a separate issue.
As smartphone makers go, Samsung dropped to barely 21-percent of the total guesstimates, while Apple was runner up with more than 13-percent. Global smartphone shipments went up a percent or two which indicates we’ve hit peak smartphone.
And, peak iPhone.
What does that mean for Apple? Nothing. Absolutely nothing.
What it means in general should be obvious. First, we’ve hit peak smartphone. Second, we have yet to hit smartphone consolidation but unless some of Apple’s competition starts making enough money to survive to make another phone another day, there will be– just like what happened in the PC market about three decades ago– industry consolidation.
Which company would you rather be? The one with a growing market share that doesn’t make any money at all? The one with a shrinking market share that doesn’t make any money at all? Or, the one which sells a few hundred million new smartphones a year, has over one billion customers, and takes home every penny of the industry’s profits?