back to article Tim Cook's answer to crashing iPhone sales: More iPhones

Apple’s plan to tackle the great iPhone sales slump is for it to produce, yes, more iPhones. CEO Tim Cook, in a scripted Q&A with the Washington Post, dismissed the six-month drop-off in sales of iPhones – and slowing smartphone sales in general. Apple is now expected to release the iPhone 7 in September. Cook reckons …

  1. djstardust

    Turning point?

    This could be the point Nokia got to when the N95 got replaced with the N96 and nobody wanted it because it was crap.

    If they do take out the headphone socket and replace it with either an expensive adapter or crappy beats headphones with a proprietary wireless protocol then many will see it as Apple pushing their luck just a little too far.

    I know quite a few people with iphones that are sick to death with them and want to change to something else. This could be the one that forces them to move on. The main issues seem to be the fact they smash so easily and that itunes is still a dog and never works properly.

    The greatest fear is that iphone owners will lose all their content if they move to another platform (which isn't true) but of course the walled garden is designed for that reason.

    At least Samsung backed down when they removed SD support, and the issue with removable batteries was sort of dealt with by putting in higher capacity fixed ones. I don't think Apple will ever back down and will push on forcing their revenue generating crap and utter greed on users for as long as they'll take it.

    10 years ago everyone had Nokia. Where are they now? Apple next .........

    1. NoneSuch Silver badge

      Re: Turning point?

      Tim Cooks plan is to have people own more than one phone is it?

      If you have Apple stock, time to sell it.

    2. wolfetone Silver badge

      Re: Turning point?

      While I would love to agree with this, I can't.

      The idea that Apple will do away with the headphone port won't disuade sales for the owners who have the money to buy an iPhone in the first place. Why? Remember the fuss there was over moving from the old iPhone/iPod connector to the lightening connector? Well sales didn't suffer. People who wanted the new phone just simply went out and bought the accessories to make it work and either mothballed their old equipment or sold it on eBay to offset the cost of the new items.

      Remember too that Apple now own Beats, and well anyone who even thinks it's a great idea to spend £300 on a set of Beats headphones instead of a pair of Bose, Audio Technica, Sonos et al, well they deserve everything they get. You can't be envious of someone who has enough money to put price and status value over actual audio and build quality can you?

      1. paulf

        Re: Turning point?


        When apple ditched the 30 pin connector they just swapped one proprietary connector for another on accessories that are only used with an iPhone. Yes, Apple probably made a fat extra pile of cash out of people replacing their accessories but, assuming they only wanted to make money and it didn't offer a some kind of improvement, that's not a trick they can pull often. Ten years ago each mobile manufacturer had their own proprietary connector and were quite happy to change these every few years - I have a box at home with a multitude of hands free earphones as testament.

        I would agree with djstardust regarding the headphone socket. This is a standard port and most consumer level things that kick out audio support it - you can plug almost any pair of headphones into any device with a 3.5mm jack. I've seen claims it's old tech and Apple led the way with ditching the Floppy Disk drive but FDDs died because their capacity didn't keep up with storage demands (BIOS supporting "Boot from CD" also helped) - the headphone jack may be old but it isn't obsolete. I may be in the minority, but having a Lightning to 3.5mm jack adaptor dangling out the bottom of a £600+ iPhone (so it can be 0.1mm thinner) doesn't strike me as either appealing nor the sign of a cutting edge innovative move. If improved water resistance (something I think already done elsewhere?) is the goal I don't believe for a second Apple's financial muscle is unable to source 3.5mm jack sockets with water resistance matching the adjacent lightning connector.

        Apple seem determined to push and push and push. Right now they seem to be pushing too far but, as is typical when this happens, they won't realise until it's too late. I lost interest long ago in their disposable/non-repairable/non-upgradable "It's all soldered to the MB" Macs and considering the number of bugs I trip over in iOS 9 it won't take much more than a dropped 3.5mm jack socket to make me lose interest in a new iPhone.

        [That said I agree with you on Beats headphones - nothing comes close to my HD-25s]

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Turning point?

          Most people listen to their iPhone using the earphones that came with it. If they dump the 3.5mm jack they'll ship different earphones that connect to the Lightning port. Dunno if they'll include an adapter, hopefully so but who knows.

          I think companies making audiophile grade headphones will make ones that connect directly to Lightning, because by including their own DAC they can get better quality audio than relying on the necessarily cheaper ones that are built into smartphones. Maybe there already are some, I remember seeing some audiophile headphones with a USB port that were designed to be plugged into a computer to directly access the digital data so they could use their own DAC.

          1. djstardust

            Re: Turning point?

            Or they could just buy a Samsung with a decent DAC built in?

            1. Anonymous Coward
              Anonymous Coward

              Samsung DAC

              What's your definition of "decent". Not one that would even begin to satisfy an audiophile, that's for sure. Do you even have any evidence that it is better than the one the iPhone includes, or are you just parroting Samsung's marketing?

        2. joed

          Re: Turning point?

          Then there's also the issue of timing. When they switched to lightning connector the market was growing and the new phone offered significant improvements over the previous gen. I don't see much gains beyond gimmicks this time (as 6s offered generous performance gains that should last for a while). Removing features that large percentage of customers relied is bad judgment and likely costly mistake in in this market climate.

      2. Disk0

        Re: Turning point?

        The difference is I have about 7.395.318 cables with a 3,6 mm mini-jack attached to one end, and serving a variety of purposes, and exactly one lightning cable.

      3. goldcd

        I disagree

        The old iPhone connector was a pain in the arse (I got firewire on the other end with my old ipod, then had to buy a silly price cable for USB to sync, firewire to charge Y-cable.) - *BUT* I did see the point.

        There was an ecosystem of docks, you could just drop your i-device into, and power would flow in, and music would flow out.

        Nobody likes connectors, but was definitely better.

        Then came the mk2 of the apple connector. I was still happy with USB - *BUT* there were still clear advantages to it (the physical flipping for a start).

        Bluntly - yes Apple are a pain in the arse with their proprietary-shit, but it was 'shit' that had an advantage and you could talk yourself into.

        My concern is that they seem to have forgotten why they got away with this stuff. Carrot and Stick.

        If they lose the phono jack.. well bluntly, where's the carrot?

    3. Kernel

      Re: Turning point?

      "10 years ago everyone had Nokia. Where are they now?"

      Ummm - in the process of bringing a new Nokia branded cellphone to market?

    4. nicercat

      Re: Turning point?

      oh fuh god's sake.... this site is so full of apple takedown zealots like you wishing against the odds for a crash. It's going to slow - sure. the iPhone is no longer an every-year-upgrade must-have. But there still a ton of things going for it *not least is privacy*. I have the latest and greatest Android Galaxy s7 edge and I'm constantly accosted by the Google desire to watch my every move on the damn thing. Tell you what, AAPL still has the fastest chip, pretty damn good OS, and crucially, gets the hell out of my private life. I'll spend 500 quid every 2 years no problemo for that.

    5. goldcd


      Plus we have google who having let 'Android free to spread its wings" are now rapidly back-tracking to close the current issue I have as an Android Fanboi, which is whilst the hardware and OS is great, I have left myself at the mercy of my manufacturer to support the damn thing (and resist the obvious urge to push me towards their latest halo-handset, they might bother to support).

      Stepping back, what Apple got right was making a premium ecosystem with novel features landing on a yearly basis to keep people in.

      "A button that reads your fingerprint to unlock" - magic of the highest order.

      After that though... erm 'meh'

      "It's bigger" - yup, it most certainly is.

      "Force Touch".. oh for the love of god, that's even nasty UI design... it's not even UI..

      Oh - and most importantly, could I mock his waxy botoxed appearance?..

      ..I swear I had the best intentions when I started writing this..

      1. nijam Silver badge

        Re: Yup

        > ... could I mock his waxy botoxed appearance?

        Has he ever been seen in the same room as Lily Savage?

  2. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Paul O'Grady has come a long way since Lily Savage

    1. TonyJ

      "...Paul O'Grady has come a long way since Lily Savage..."

      Bit like the iPhone itself...that one is getting old, every time there's a pic of Cook on here.

      1. TonyJ

        ""...Paul O'Grady has come a long way since Lily Savage..."

        Bit like the iPhone itself...that one is getting old, every time there's a pic of Cook on here."

        Oooopss...upset the fanboi's there. ;) Or it's just Monday-loss-of-sense-of-humour!

    2. wolfetone Silver badge

      "Paul O'Grady has come a long way since Lily Savage"

      If an Author for El Reg gets sloppy, and put a photo of Paul O'Grady up instead of Tim Cook, would anyone notice?

      1. Brewster's Angle Grinder Silver badge

        Depends on whether or not Tim Cook was dressed as Lilly Savage.

  3. Thomas Wolf

    iPhone sales crashing: hyperbole much?

    Not to stand in the way of a good (and expected from Register) Apple bash, but the only "crashing" iPhone sales have done is relative to the outsized sales of the iPhone 6 - a phone that sold in crazy numbers due to the new screen size. If you take out that one data point, iPhone sales are on a pretty linear growth path.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      The iPhone 6 satisfied a lot of pent up demand

      It not only satisfied demand for a larger iPhone, but Apple finally made a deal with China Mobile, the largest carrier in the world with over 700 million subscribers.

      Of course a product that satisfies such a large amount of pent up demand is going to have a big spike in sales - that's why it clobbered the 5/5S's sales by such a large margin. That huge spike in sales with the 6 also made it nearly impossible for the 6S to go higher. The fact that the 6S edged past the 6's sales in Q4 of 2015 is arguably more surprising that the declines Q1/Q2 of 2016.

      The sales of all products have to peak at some point, nothing can go up forever. But a decline off the 6's sales does't mean that the iPhone will decline forever. Only a fool or an Apple hater with wishful thinking believes the 6S showing lower sales than the 6 means Apple is in terminal decline.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: The iPhone 6 satisfied a lot of pent up demand


        Only a fool or an Apple hater

        Apple is the company that almost everyone here loves to hate. I'm sure a few will be along shortly to downvote almost everything in sight at the merest mention of Apple.

  4. Don Dumb

    Features like Siri?

    I only ever saw/heard people use Siri the first time they got an iPhone or on comedy shows. In the last few years I haven't ever seen or heard of anyone using Siri. I have known of people using voice control*, like phone dialling from the car or from their headset while walking but never bothering with Siri.

    If that's an example of the amazing new features (which are several years old) that are going to get people buying new or second iPhones, then the market has matured and sales will slow down. There's been nothing new of any real significance for several generations, in any phone, just slow iteration. There's little need to upgrade other than because the phone is broken, slowed down by OS updates or now a bit too small. With Apple prices people aren't keen to splash cash every couple of years unless necessary and it is becoming less necessary each year - no matter how much Apple tell us "it's a game changing changer change".

    This doesn't mean that smartphones or Apple are dead, but just like TVs we buy them to last 5+ years not until next year. There's nothing wrong with that but electronics firms have got used to massive sales and haven't quite had the guts to tell their investors that it won't last for ever.

    * - Siri and voice control on iPhones aren't the same, the phone's commands "dial mum" can be driven by voice with Siri turned off, it was present before 'Siri' was even a thing

    1. hellwig

      Re: Features like Siri?

      "SIRI - dictate a message"

      "Finding 'dick massage' in your area"


      I agree that SIRI shouldn't be a selling point for hardware. It should be "stand alone software" that could be installed to any reasonable phone/OS combination. I mean, Microsoft released Cortana for Android (for some reason), if Microsoft can disconnect a service from their OS, you'd think Apple could, if they wanted to. Then again, Microsoft ties Internet Explorer/Edge updates to the OS, like anyone other than stubborn corporations locked into ActiveX still use Microsoft's browser.

      Phone hardware has hit a lull. 8 cores, 3GB, Quad-HD screens, 5, 6, 7 inches! You can only repackage the same thing so often. If the new hardware doesn't offer anything you want (3D TV?! no thanks), you just aren't going to buy.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Features like Siri?

      I know people (including relatives) who have iPhones and have that exact usage pattern for Siri. All except one who has never used it and says they never will. They turned it off in the Apple Store whilst the tech bloke explained how to do it and said that there really wasn't any need to do it. I turned off the Google equivalent on my smart phone and turn off the data when I'm not using it which saves battery and data usage (emails are on my work phone).

  5. Richard Wharram

    iPhone sales a bit slow before iPhone 7 launch

    Not entirely surprising to anyone is it?

    The 6S was (as the S models usually are) seen as an upgrade to the 6. So in terms of iPhone product cycles this should be the lowest point. Wait until the 7 has been out a bit before writing Apple off.

  6. JimmyPage Silver badge

    Going out on a limb here ...

    I called an end to PC sales back in 2012. So far I have been right.

    I am now calling an end to smartphone sales.

    Of course they will be made - and sold. But it should be blindingly obvious to anyone (who isn't trying to flog their consultancy - looking at you Gartner) that

    1) everyone who wants one has one

    2) any sales from this point on are

    2.1) - replacements

    2.2) - first handsets for newer users.

    Beyond that, any *growth* will come - and only come - when the next Smartphone offers something the current crop don't.

    Now that will happen - I remain convinced that the next area for innovation and development will be assistive technologies. Not because manufacturers have suddenly felt sorry for the less-able (who are still scum as far as the market goes), but because the early fanbois of the 2000s will be approaching 70 very soon, and the market can't risk them giving up the shiny because of fading eyesight, hearing, and co-ordination.

    When that happens, we'll have the sales upsurge.

    Here's another prediction. Any iPhone 7 will only show development in areas which can be built upon by adaptive technology.

    If I am ever called on to back up my assertion about the lack of interest in the less-able, just google "Talkback bluetooth" and see the lack of coherent hits for what *should* be the blind/partially sighted persons saviour.

    Unsure of what icon to use, but I'm now pretty pissed off.

    1. JimmyPage Silver badge

      Re: Going out on a limb here ...

      Oh, and to backup my own theory, Siri is part of that assistive technology package.

      Yes we may all have a jolly good laugh now. But in 10 years time, I guarantee a lot more (older) people will be finding it invaluable.

  7. Howard Hanek


    Sorry Mr. Cook. Fairy Tale marketing only works until they get a little older and wiser. Work on improving the iPhone not making it even more proprietary.

  8. SMabille

    More than one

    "Just like TV, people will want more than one iPhone..."

    Except the amount of effort to move TV from living room to bed room is slightly higher than moving a MOBILE phone.

    Am I missing.something here???

    1. Brewster's Angle Grinder Silver badge

      Re: More than one

      A rugged phone for every day use and a flash phone you pull out when you want to show off?

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: More than one

        But that won't help Apple

        A rugged phone (pretty much anything but an iPhone, really) and a flash phone (iPhone)

    2. admiraljkb

      Re: More than one

      "Just like TV, people will want more than one iPhone..."

      Based on what I've seen around me (and YMMV), people that would have more than 1 phone would not have two iPhones they'd have two or more Android devices for playing around with (like one they didn't mind getting lost/broken/whatevs at the concert,vacay, or at the lake), or they'd have one of each (like an iPhone for work and Android based for personal). Those are the scenarios I see around me currently for people that have more than one. In either scenario, its not ultimately good for Apple since both devices aren't Apple.

      1. Brewster's Angle Grinder Silver badge

        Re: More than one

        "..its not ultimately good for Apple since both devices aren't Apple."

        It's better for Apple that we have an iPhone and another phone rather than picking between Apple and Android.

    3. Fink-Nottle

      Re: More than one

      > Am I missing.something here???

      Just this week I overheard two young mothers in Morrisons discussing which iPhone model was best for an 8 year-old.

  9. Bob 18

    > Cook reckons smartphones are equivalent to TVs, in that people will own more than one

    Oh Tim, there's a difference between iPhones and TVs. TVs. are big and non-portable, so you install one in every room where you want to watch TV. iPhones are a personal item you carry in your pocket. Why would anyone need more than one? Especially since each iPhone sucks up your time on maintenance, update,s etc?

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Thumb Up

      Why would anyone need more than one?

      That's the clever thing... phones are getting bigger and bigger.

      The logical end point is that phones will get so big that people will buy one for each room, and mount them on walls, or put them on stands. So that's the multiple iPhone ownership explained.

      But there's more...

      All the phone's communications functionality will then be migrated to some small portable device, that will connect to the static wall-mounted iPhones, when in range, or to the network when you're out and about. These portable devices will be known as iPods so as not to confuse them with your numerous fixed location iPhones. In time these iPods too will grow in size, and so the consumer cycle is repeated, and Apple's share price will continue to make happy!

      Hopefully that's cleared up any confusion.

    2. Andy_Lee

      Eating up time really

      Must admit I find the maintenance comment pretty funny. Mine downloads updates in the background lets me schedule when I want it to update i.e. middle of the night when hopefully I wont need it. Apps update in the background, hardly work intensive is it?

  10. James 51

    It's a pity that privacy wasn't on the list of features (along with completely removing privacy invading honey pots like Siri and respecting customers (still annoyed about the wrong hand antenna problem)).

  11. Joe Harrison

    Their control freakery drives you mad

    Just spent part of the weekend helping a friend who had an iphone 4 with smashed screen but it still just about worked. Friend got a replacement iphone 4 from somewhere but wanted to copy 200+ phone numbers from the old one.

    What a nightmare. Every normal phone from about the 1990s has allowed you to do this by copying your contacts onto the SIM then swap the SIM to the new phone. But no, this is not good enough for Apple. Instead had to do some complicated messing about with "itunes" and a laptop.

    Did recover the contact records in the end but what are Apple thinking, that people will forever keep paying a substantial premium for their products "just because"?

    1. Dan 55 Silver badge

      Re: Their control freakery drives you mad

      As soon as you have contact data that is more than name-number, SIM storage is pretty crap.

    2. ckm5

      Re: Their control freakery drives you mad

      Funny, I just had the same thing with an Android phone. Migrating all the data is a nightmare, much easier on an Iphone. Just backup the old phone & restore to the new phone. On Android, you have to use a 1/2 dozen flaky apps and even then, not all the data migrates....

      While I do understand the Apple hate, their shit does work, often better than competitors.

      1. Stuart Halliday

        Re: Their control freakery drives you mad


        You just sign in with your Google account and they are automatically added. Nothing to it!

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Their control freakery drives you mad

          Your Google account? Oh that one. Where you give Google permission to slurp all your data and make money from it.

          At least with Apple (AFAIK and at time of writing) they won't sell it to a 3rd party. Who knows what Google will do with your data.

          This is all moot to me as my old Nokia does not hacve any of this smartphone tech.

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: Their control freakery drives you mad

            Yeah, Google's data slurping could be a problem if you wanted to sync your contacts to a Google server. That information about "who you know" is likely added to their already voluminous database they keep on everyone. Does Google say anywhere that won't read your contact info? Heck, they might read it right off your phone come to think of it, in which case it wouldn't matter if you synced to their servers I guess...

            There's a reason why I never let Facebook access to my contacts, though some of my friends obviously have done so, as every once in a while Facebook tries to get me to add my mobile number and "suggests" my actual mobile number which they obviously didn't get from me. Freaked me out a bit the first time that happened, until I figured out how it must have happened. But at least they can't expand their internal DB with people I know beyond those from Facebook since they have no access to read my contacts even though their app wishes it could!

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Their control freakery drives you mad

        Yeah, ckm5, you might want to get someone to show you how to use an Android next time...

        And Joe Harrison, you might want to get someone to show you how to use an iPhone

    3. petecamp

      Re: Their control freakery drives you mad

      Migrating from old iPhone to new iPhone is stupid simple. Plug old phone into computer, backup. Plug new phone into computer, restore. No need to copy contacts to SIM card, photos and music to multiple SD cards, etc.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Their control freakery drives you mad

        You don't even need a computer. Just sync the contacts etc. to iCloud, and sync the new phone. Though you probably want to sync everything, which you can do with a full iCloud backup. I prefer using the computer with iTunes, but if you don't have that iCloud is dead simple. Claiming that something is a big pain when you don't know what you're doing is stupid. I'd probably think some stuff on Android is way hard because I'm not familiar with it, but someone who knows Android might be able to show me it is actually simple - but then I'm smart enough not to assume my ignorance means a product sucks.

  12. Commswonk

    I await a banner headline in the Daily ****


    Better get my coat again

  13. Arctic fox

    "India is the new China, as growth in the latter has slowed."

    The only problem with that is that India in terms of market share is almost entirely Android as far as smartphones go.*

    We saw the pc market mature and begin to "adjust" downwards about 3 years or so ago. Thereafter we saw the tablet market (iPads included) do the same. The first indications that the smartphone market was heading the same way started to crop up about a year or more ago. No one is immune - not even Cupertino. Markets mature, they saturate and refresh rates begin to slow down. I repeat a point that I have made before. Where once the tech that the average member of the domestic retail market owned and used consisted of the "dumbphone" they carried with them and the pc they had at home, there are now three pieces of tech that are competing for the punter's spons - the phone, the pad and the pc.** It is scarcely amazing that the turnover in all of these markets is slowing. No company's bottom line can defy gravity for ever - about time that the markets had a more mature attitude to such issues. The hysterical volte-face from "buy, buy, buy I tell you" to " for God's sake sell, sell, sell" is, frankly speaking, no way to run an economy.

    *No, this is not a "Fandroid" speaking - these are facts. At Arctic Fox towers I run a L950XL as my primary and a L950 as my backup. Madam runs a Sony Xperia as her primary and a midrange HTC as her backup - we are an ecumenical household.

    ** Currently, AFAIK, the only growth in "shinies" of any kind in the retail market is in the area of "all-in-ones" and "hybrids". How long that will last is anybody's guess.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: "India is the new China, as growth in the latter has slowed."

      By India I presume Cook means the affluent classes rather than the rural and urban poor with barely access to a mains sewerage connected toilet.

      Or have I missed a step, and Apple have some low-cost answer to empower the peasantry ?

      1. Arctic fox

        Re: "India is the new China, as growth in the latter has slowed."

        "Or have I missed a step, and Apple have some low-cost answer to empower the peasantry ?"

        Pardon? This is Apple we are talking about! :)

    2. bazza Silver badge

      Re: "India is the new China, as growth in the latter has slowed."

      There was an article a few weeks back here on The Register exploring the rise of Android in China. Not Google-Android, but Android spun up by the locals to use local services, mapping, payment, etc. Regardless of what one thinks of the governmental and company set up over there, it seems that they've done a pretty comprehensive job of it over there, and everyone uses it, right down to the QR codes.

      So if iPhones aren't glued into that local services infrastructure in China, a lot of people will be thinking "pretty, but useless. Pass me an Android". Which would make it very difficult to get stellar growth in iPhones going in a sustained way over there.

      In that respect, both Google and Apple are now shut out of China. Missed the boat, or at least refused to agree to the conditions of passage on that boat.

      1. Ken 16 Silver badge

        and the local phones are slick

        Xiaomi and others have phones that are as well put together as iPhones, exceed every iPhone spec and have a UI on their Android to make it work in a similar manner to Apple. They've even got the supporting accessories.

  14. Sir_bobbyuk

    Cook keeping his cards close to his chest

    Either Cook is keeping his cards close to his Chest or he in his own fantasy world. In the mobile business everyone is trying to beat the other and Apple will be made to look like they are stood still while the competition streak ahead with new devices, with faster processors, bigger hard drive more functions. Cook better wake up and start developing some new stuff or he will be out in the cold.

  15. Stuart Halliday

    No Sales man then

    Any sales person will tell you Benefits sell products, not features.

    My idea is add a infrared camera to it. It'll be useful for engineers and the kiddies can take amusing photos of each other.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: add a infrared camera to it

      Er, it *already* has an infrared camera ...

    2. bazza Silver badge

      Re: No Sales man then

      Any CMOS based camera sensor is already an infrared camera, especially so if you remove the IR filter that they place between it and the lens to stop it being an IR camera.

    3. slime

      Re: No Sales man then

      Thermal imaging already being used as a feature on at least one phone :

  16. Timbo

    "The iPhone accounts..."blah-blah-blah"...40.4 million (units) ..."blah-blah-blah"...51.2m units..."blah-blah-blah"..."

    I'm still quite amazed at human kinds ability to actually manufacture such significant numbers of a highly technical product, in such a short space of time (the above numbers relate to fiscal quarters...

    I can understand it with "simple items" say Mars bars, or packets of corn flakes, etc...but it's indeed a "good business" for anyone when they make 50 million of anything in just a few months !!

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      For context, Heinz baked bean factory in Wigan makes 3 million tins per day, Kellogs Manchester 1 million packets a day.

      source, BBC Inside the Factory

  17. Mr_Happy


    Apple will fail in India, far too expensive whereas there is an Android at every price point with support for dual sims which is a must in India

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Fail

      Apple is too expensive for 95% of India, but if they can do as well with the top income levels as they do elsewhere they will sell a ton of phones there. Cook also said it is more of a long term play - i.e. India will grow its middle class over time just like China has done.

      As for dual SIM, there are dual/tri SIM adapters available for the iPhone now, that are designed to work with a case (there's a connector that goes in the slot with a ribbon cable that connects to the multiple SIMs, you bend it around the phone and keep it hidden in the case) Though Apple does have patents for some type of dual SIM system that uses an internal built in / software SIM along with a traditional SIM. There are even rumors that the iPhone 7 will have a dual SIM tray, though there have been rumors for all kinds of stuff for the iPhone 7 so who knows.

      Agreed that to have real success in India Apple will need to do something about that, or find other ways around what is behind the need in India for dual SIMs. They aren't stupid, so they will address it somehow when they are ready to really plunge into the India market. Since they have been busy just getting permission to open the first Apple Stores there they perhaps haven't quite got to the point where they are ready to design features into the iPhone for this.

  18. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Apple stock is up 20% from the recent low

    The article makes it sound like Apple is at its two year low now, ignoring that half the decline from its peak has already been made up. Sales can't keep growing forever, they have to peak sometime, but Wall Street inevitably overreacted when that happened.

    1. bazza Silver badge

      Re: Apple stock is up 20% from the recent low

      Agreed, but unfortunately the shareholders kinda expect it, especially if they're not getting a nice fat dividend to make a return on their investment. It is logical that any given market will eventually saturate, but try telling that to the guys who hold the shares.

      Practically the only duty of a company board is to increase shareholder value by whatever means possible, and one way to offset falling sales is to pay a bigger dividend on previously earned profits. Though ultimately it's not possible to sustain a share price higher than the true worth of the company. One massive problem for Apple is that it may eventually have to pay a large tax bill if it does repatriate all its profits stashed abroad, unless they can take the borrow-to-pay-dividend to extremes.

      But doing that means the Uncle Sam (who is broke and could really do with the $80billion in tax revenue they'd normally collect on profits like Apple's) gets increasingly grumpy about tax avoidance, and becomes more likely to pass a harsh tax law to cover off that trick. The shareholders may expect a return, but the government can pass a law to ensure they get their share first.

      Peak Apple? Peak smartphone I suspect. There's simply not any well developed cash rich places left where smartphones haven't already been sold in abundance. Places like India and Africa may not have many smartphones in use, but then there's not that much surplus cash to be milked in iTunes and phone sales either. Apple's next $100billion is not going to come from either continent - they simply don't have that much spare money lying around to be spent on fripperies. And if they did they'd have got it through economic trade with other places, meaning those place themselves then don't have that money to spend on iPhone, etc.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Apple stock is up 20% from the recent low

        Errr, Apple stockholders ARE getting a nice fat dividend to make a return on their investment. Not "utility dividend" fat, but far better than the zero dividend you get from Google, Amazon, Netflix and other tech darlings.

  19. Leeroy


    'Over time, I’m convinced every person in the world will have a smartphone. '

    I assume that he meant every person that has clean water, enough to eat and surplus income. Narrows the market a bit when you put it like that.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Water

      Nope. I think he really meant every adult or even every person. Smartphones are incredibly useful things that can help people do important stuff. When time is money, a smartphone isn't just a toy.

  20. Dwarf


    They could make one that doesn't cost and arm and a leg, yet still has the useful functions on it.

    I've been putting off buying a replacement for the kids for a while now - not since I can't afford it, but because I won't pay the silly prices. Its interesting to see the iPhone 5s revamp pop up and prices starting to come down on Vodafone (hint - keep going guys, you are getting there)

    They also need to stop the "old phone means its got to come with 8Gb of storage" BS or trying to charge £70 for a small increase in FLASH storage - its not an expensive commodity !

    Perhaps they are realising that people are saying "meh" (not to siri silly)

    For fun, when silly pops up when you mistime the duration on the home button, then it refuses to go away when you hit the home button again, try swearing at it, then it says something stupid like "I was only trying to help". Pointless software.

    1. The Original Steve

      Re: Suggestion

      Have you considered a smartphone from a different manufacturer.. maybe?

      1. Dwarf

        Re: Suggestion


        The point is about why revenues are down. The new phones on contracts are about double what it cost last time around - well above the rate of inflation, so I'm sweating the old phone until it fails and can't be repaired at home (i.e. more than battery/screen). I expect others are doing the same or going to other vendors like android. Tech savvy son is already drooling over a Samsung (that obviously costs even more).

        The iStuff has a couple of benefits for me at this point - such as GPS location tracking when they are out and don't come back at the right time or you need to go and pick them up, etc.

        Obviously there is a lot of fat in iThings - hence Apple's massive annual profits.

  21. VinceH

    "Cook reckons smartphones are equivalent to TVs, in that people will own more than one, with consumers unable to resist buying them thanks to features such as Siri."

    Well, if I look at myself as an example, he's sort of right. I do own more than one smartphone.

    However, the reason for that is simply because I had my old one for so long, and it's suitably battered, that it's not worth anything if I wanted to sell it (especially when newer, cheaper phones are better) - so I may as well keep it as an emergency spare. It's either that or lanfill. I expect I'll have the current one for a similarly long time, so it'll end up in the same boat.

  22. Diogenes

    The logical step given the grunt inside the phone

    The next step is to what Microsoft proposed and did not follow through on with their phones, ... pop the phone in a dock with a mini HDMI connector attached to a 24in monitor, and ethernet , full size USB ports, and charger(like the Surface dock), bluetooth a mouse and keyboard and use the phone as a BYOD computer - especially in a school situation. - Most kids here have a smartphone, but no computer of any sort at home, let alone one they are allowed to bring to school .

  23. Kevin McMurtrie Silver badge

    This is not the market you're looking for

    Google and Apple have been saying the same about India without success. Google likes personal data collection, advertisements, social manipulation, cloud storage, and other things that drain batteries and data plans in an instant. Apple likes sky-high margins, new technology, flashy looks, and customer lock-in. Neither one suits India. Even Apple's and Google's current markets are growing a bit weary of these designs.

    Some phone makers do understand it - replaceable battery, splash resistant, protective rim around the glass edge, minimal OS that runs for days on a charge, unlocked bootloader for free third party OS upgrades, microSD slot for cheap storage upgrades, and a bit of extra bulk to avoid exotic construction.

  24. james 68

    Words and actions dont match

    I was wondering what was going on here in Japan.

    I have been searching for a new phone for about a month, about 2 weeks ago I noticed that all of a sudden every vendor was having sales and special offers on iphones.I'm talking serious 1/2 the previous price kinda deals, and the sales people are giving themselves hernias trying to force an iphone sale even after you tell them that you specifically do not want one.

    Not enough to make me even consider one (I had an iphone previously, my wife has an iphone 6 and to me they are utter shite tied up in a pretty bow) but more than enough to get many customers to do so.

    I guess they're trying to fluff the sales figures in the asian market, even if it means moving product at or near an actual sane price.


    Re: "India is the new China, as growth in the latter has slowed."

    China, US and most of the developed world are mature smartphone markets, where most everybody that wants one already has one. The big un-satisfied market is in India. ALL of the smartphones are now manufactured in China or Kores (Samsung). India, (smarter than the rest of us, I guess), has placed a 12% import tariff on smartphones. Consequently, Apple and Samsung are building plants there to make phones for the Indian market. So Indians get employment, as well as inexpensive smartphones.

  26. ITBloke

    Multiple phones=multiple SIM=Multiple Phone numbers???

    OK I know you can have more than one SIM but has Tim Cook forgotten that these are first and foremost telephones, complete with a phone number that is tied to a SIM that is supplied by a non-apple owned telco and as such having more than one is not an option for most people unless you want multiple contracts and different numbers per device. Sounds like a desperate statement to me which could be translated as "we have sold as many of these iThings as possible but I can continue to justify my salary and job if I can persuade the shareholders that people will buy redundant devices even though the whole idea is impractical, expensive and useless"

  27. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Real Problem with no jack

    The real problem with the missing 3.5mm jack is trying to listen with earbuds and charge the phone at the same time without some lightning hub that apple can charge $45 for,

  28. dave 76


    maybe Apple has looked at the sales numbers and decided that sufficient people are using Bluetooth headphones now that dumping the 3.5 jack is possible.

    It seems from most of the commentators that the expectation is that people must have wired connections, I use both wired and bluetooth earphones and in most mobile environments the bluetooth is clear enough that I don't miss the wired and the battery life is longer than a day.

POST COMMENT House rules

Not a member of The Register? Create a new account here.

  • Enter your comment

  • Add an icon

Anonymous cowards cannot choose their icon

Other stories you might like