Published: Sat, January 05, 2019
Money | By Hannah Jacobs

Apple Says Cheap Battery Swaps To Blame For Wonky Sales

Apple Says Cheap Battery Swaps To Blame For Wonky Sales

However, it was revealed by Apple this week that the company's fiscal first-quarter revenue would be 7 percent lower than previously expected, netting the company $84 billion.

In a letter to investors, Apple CEO Tim Cook pointed to a slowing economy, particularly in China.

The latest news sparked talk of the "Nokia moment" for Apple - a reference to the Finnish-based firm that led the mobile phone market in the early 2000s. Apple CEO Tim Cook issued a warning Wednesday that the iPhone maker will badly miss its revenue forecast for the first time in over 15 years. Apple didn't only reduce the battery replacement service as a sales pitch but in an effort to preserve outdated batteries for material re-use.

Sacconaghi acknowledged that "a meaningful portion of the China weakness is macro driven", which means there are circumstances beyond Apple's control.

"The government-reported GDP growth during the September quarter was the second lowest in the last 25 years", said Cook in a letter to Apple shareholders. Tech analysts say local brands like Huawei and Oppo have been closing the gap with Apple in terms of performance and design even while Cupertino continues to raise its prices.

But with the most expensive iPhone costing more than the average annual wage, Apple (AAPL) faces an uphill battle to take a much bigger share of India's market than its current 2%.

Cook said there were some bright spots for Apple in some parts of the world and that the company expects "all-time revenue records in several developed countries, including the United States, Canada, Germany, Italy, Spain, the Netherlands and [South] Korea".

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The stock has fallen about 30 per cent since Cook first said in a November earnings call that the company might experience lower sales over the Christmas period.

"No, I'm not", Trump said after he was asked at a White House news conference about Apple's revenue warning this week.

Apple did not immediately respond to a request for comment on Thursday.

That spells trouble for companies that rely on China's enormous market to boost their global sales.

"Apple's iPhones are facing a saturated premium smartphone market, with slowing growth rates and increased competition in China", Anshul Gupta, a research director at Gartner Inc., said last month when the firm released its latest smartphone sales tallies.

Apple shares plummeted almost 10 percent on the news Thursday, with the company shedding some 38 percent since its valuation hit $1 trillion previous year.

So, not only is the overall smartphone market just not a fast-growing one, but Apple's corner of it - lucrative as it is - looks set to become a smaller portion of the overall market.

But Windsor said: "I do not in any way think that this represents Apple's "Nokia" moment simply because there is still nothing to seriously challenge the iPhone in the high-end segment".

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