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How iPhone Supercharged Apple in 8 Years

  Design | Mobile | Technology
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Jan 312015

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The iPhone 6, released on Tuesday, September 9, 2014, skyrocketed the legacy of mogul Steve Jobs, as the innovator of experiential-based smart mobile technology devices. By plugging into Steve Jobs’ iPhone, global consumers have supercharged the enterprise value of Apple, as the world’s most powerful digital hand-held device firm in just 8 years.

Apple’s 2015 first quarterly results in sales of $US 74.6 billion with net earnings of $US 18 billion are the largest quarterly profits of any public company in business history. As a result, Apple is considered to be among the most valuable brands in the world, according to Milward Brown, as the digital mobile device mega-firm generates billions of dollars in revenue each year.

On February 10, 2015, Apple Inc. became the first company in U.S. business history to close with a market capitalization above $700 billion. Chief Executive Tim Cook said Apple has succeeded in its ability to sell iPhones and iPads across the global marketplace.

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Walking into an Apple Superstore near you, the Apple brand experience envelops you. So, one must immediately conclude that this is the new technological shopping mall and consumer social engagement experience at the dawn of the digital millennium. Young and old alike, we are engulfed by the wonderful experience of Steve Jobs’ smart devices.

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How the iPhone Changed Apple in Just 8 Years

The first generation of Apple’s iPhone was introduced in 2007, bringing new and innovative features, such as a multi-touch interface, to a broader audience. Since its market launch in 2007, Apple has released a new generation of iPhones each year, ran on Apple’s own mobile iOS operating system.

The last quarter before Steve Jobs unveiled the original iPhone, Apple’s revenue amounted to $US 7.1 billion in the first quarter of 2007. Contributing $US 3.4 billion or 48% of the firm’s total revenue, the iPod was Apple’s most important product back then, says Felix Richter, Statista Media Relations Manager, with the Mac producing $US 2.4 billion or 34% of Apple’s total revenue, and all other products of services creating $US 1.3 billion or 18% of the firm’s top-line value.

Now, eight years later, the iPod has been rendered all but obsolete, as smartphones have taken over most music playback experiences for consumers. Apple does not release iPod sales anymore. Instead, they are buried in the “other products” category amounting to $US 2.7 billion or 4% of the firm’s total revenue in the first quarter of 2015 at $US 74.6 billion.

Other notable Apple products are the iMac, the MacBook, the iPod and Apple TV. Apple TV which, as Steve Jobs, once put it, is considered a mere hobby at Apple.

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Sales of the iPhone have risen steadily over the years, from around 1.4 million iPhones sold in 2007 to almost 170 million units worldwide in 2014. In total, Apple has sold more than 590 million new iPhones from 2007 to 2014, building upon its substantial global market share in 2013 at 15.3 percent of new smartphone sales worldwide.

Remarkably, iPhone sales alone generated $US 51.2 billion in the first quarter of 2015, accounting for almost 69% of Apple’s total revenue in that period. The iPad amounted to $US 9 billion in revenue or 12% of the digital product giant’s overall revenue stream, with the Mac contributing $US 6.9 billion or 9% of the firm’s top-line sales figures. Additional services, including iTunes and the App Store produced $9 billion in revenues for Apple or 6% of total enterprise sales at the digital products firm.

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Apple’s 2015 Quarterly Earnings Are the Largest of Any Public Company in Business History

In the first quarter of 2007, Apple generated $US 5 million, selling iPhones and iPhone related goods and services. Since then, the digital device giant has rocketed to the moon in earnings, supercharged by the iPhone. In the second quarter of 2011, 18.65 million iPhones were sold worldwide. In the 2011 fiscal year, Apple sold 72 million iPhones. Moreover, the iPhone revenue streams amounted to $US 47 billion, representing more than 40% of Apple’s total revenue stream.

The data below shows the amount of quarterly revenues in billions (B) generated from sales of Apple’s iPhone worldwide, since the third quarter of 2007.


[Original iPhone release]

Q3, $US 0.27B ; Q4, $US 1.12B


[iPhone 3G release in July 2008]

Q1, $US 2.32B ; Q2, $US 1.70B

Q3, $US 0.72B ; Q4, $US 6.89B


[iPhone 3GS release in June 2009]

Q1, $US 4.36B ; Q2, $US 3.79B

Q3, $US 5.21B ; Q4, $US 7.37B


[iPhone 4 release in June 2010]

Q1, $US 8.74B ; Q2, $US 8.75B

Q3, $US 8.40B ; Q4, $US 14.1B


[iPhone 4S release in October 2011]

Q1, $US 16.24B ; Q2, $US 18.65B

Q3, $US 20.34B ; Q4, $US 17.07B


[iPhone 5 release in September 2012]

Q1, $US 37.04B ; Q2, $US 35.06B

Q3, $US 26.05B ; Q4, $US 36.91B


[iPhone 5C / 5S release in September 2013]

Q1, $US 47.79B ; Q2, $US 37.43B

Q3, $US 31.24B ; Q4, $US 33.80B


[iPhone 6 release on Tuesday, September 9, 2014]

Q1, $US 51.03B ; Q2, $US 43.72B

Q3, $US 35.20B ; Q4, $US 39.27B


Q1, $US 74.6B

As the iPhone is considered Apple’s most profitable product, the top four quarterly revenue results for Apple (shown bold in the above data) occurred as a result of the global marketing of its wildly popular iPhone 5 launch in September 2012, generating $US 37.04 billion in first quarter revenues in 2012.

Next, the iPhone 5C / 5S release in September 2013 garnered $US 47.79 billion in first quarter revenues in 2013.

And finally, the iPhone 6 launch on Tuesday, September 9, 2014 produced $US 51.03 billion in first quarter revenues in 2014, followed by $US 74.6 billion in first quarter revenues in 2015.

The iPhone is arguably the lion’s share of the company’s record-breaking $US 18 billion profit over the last three months.

Apple’s quarterly results in the first quarter of 2015 were the largest quarterly earnings of any public company in business history. The company sold 74.5 million iPhones to create this phenomenal $US 18 billion in earnings. Read more in Statista’s latest Forbes feature.

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“It only took the iPhone eight years from 2007 to 2015 to evolve from what many considered an overpriced experiential-based niche product to the world’s largest digital-device cash cow – an achievement that is unlikely to be repeated in the foreseeable future,” says Felix Richter, Statista Media Relations Manager.

“Apple reported earnings for the fourth quarter of the company’s fiscal year which ended September 27, 2014. Boosted by record iPhone sales, Apple beat analysts’ estimates with net profit of $8.47 billion on revenue of $42.12 billion,” Richter reports.

Richter adds: “Having launched the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus late in September, Apple sold 39 million iPhones in the past quarter, improving 16% over last year’s September quarter. According to CEO Tim Cook, demand for the new iPhones continues to exceed supply by a wide margin. The iPhone is Apple’s most important business by far, accounting for 56% of the company’s revenue over the past three months.”

“Meanwhile the iPad, previously Apple’s second largest source of revenue, continued its recent sales slump and fell behind Apple’s Mac business in terms of revenue. While iPad sales were down 13% year-over-year to 12.3 million, Mac sales improved 21% as Apple sold more Macs than ever before in a single quarter (5.5 million).”



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