We’ve Finally Hit Peak iPhone

This article was last updated on April 16, 2022

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we’ve finally hit peak iphone
Photographed By Rockie Nolan.
Apple announced its first quarter sales numbers today, and it's official: We've hit peak iPhone.

The holiday quarter is always Apple's (and most retail companies') biggest money making period of the year. 2015 was no exception. Apple sold 74.77 million iPhones over the past three months.

What's unusual about that high this year, though, is it's essentially the same as the sales peak Apple hit last year after the iPhone 6 and 6s were announced: 74.5 million iPhones. Up until now, each year, iPhone sales have grown significantly. With this quarter, it's finally leveled off.

Will that trend continue? Or will iPhone sales actually go down in the next year or two? While it's difficult to say for sure, yes, it's definitely possible. Smartphones have reached a point where they're nearly all very fast, have good cameras, and generally offer a satisfying experience. For established markets like the U.S., the draws of a new phone — this year's iPhone 6s featured a pressure sensitive screen, a better camera, and a faster fingerprint sensor — just aren't enough to justify a $650 purchase when you've already got a handset that works fine and does what you need.

In its earnings call this afternoon, Apple CEO Tim Cook said that 40% of iPhone users are on the iPhone 6, 6s, 6 Plus, or 6s Plus — the phones announced within the last year and a half. That's a large number of people who have upgraded recently, but a larger number still who haven't.

With that in mind, Apple's areas of growth continue to be emerging markets (China and India, in particular). As LTE coverage expands globally, people who don't yet have reason to buy an iPhone may be able to purchase one.

Apple's iPhone sales leveling off isn't a sign of impending doom for the smartphone market, the iPhone, or Apple itself. The Cupertino company still makes a boatload of money (it's quarterly revenue record this time around: $75.9 billion), and now sees one billion active Apple devices across the globe. While we may have hit peak iPhone in sales, rest assured, you're not going to stop seeing them any time soon.

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