In July 2012, shares of Apple were trading in the low US$600 range and were about to embark on a rather sudden ascent to $700. The party, however, didn't last long as Apple shares quickly began a steady decline, hitting a 52-week low of $390 this past April.
In an effort to explain why Apple stock was falling so precipitously, we were treated to a host of analysts and talking heads who were quick to proclaim that Apple had peaked and that it had, seemingly overnight, lost the ability to innovate.
An oft-heard refrain was that everyone who wants an iPhone already has one and that Apple would face many challenges trying to sell more iPhones in an increasingly crowded marketplace.
But then a funny thing happened. Last week, Verizon reported its earnings results from Q2 2013 and the results were better than what most analysts were expecting. Last quarter, Verizon activated 7.5 million smartphones, of which 3.8 million units were iPhones. Put differently, nearly 51 percent of all smartphones Verizon activated last quarter were iPhones.
That's pretty impressive, but the folks on Wall Street don't care so much about product share as they do about overall growth.
To that end, the 3.8 million iPhones Verizon activated this past quarter far eclipsed the 2.7 million units it sold during Q2 of 2012. Year over year, iPhone activations on Verizon grew by 40.7 percent.
And yet, somehow, that little tidbit was inexplicably glossed over by those who are so quick to paint a doom-and-gloom scenario for Apple based upon some sketchily sourced secondhand rumor about iPhone production emanating out of a manufacturing plant in Asia.
Apple is set to announce its earnings for the quarter gone by tomorrow, and it remains to be seen how iPhone sales will measure up to the year-ago quarter. Indeed, many analysts are predicting that Apple's year-over-year growth will be somewhat stagnant in that regard. And that may very well be the case. After all, Verizon is just a single carrier and its recent results many not be representative of iPhone activations across all carriers.
That notwithstanding, it'd be nice if the analysts who get paid to keep up with Apple paid as much attention to potentially good news as they do to potentially alarming news.
*Verizon has acquired AOL, Engadget's parent company. However, Engadget maintains full editorial control, and Verizon will have to pry it from our cold, dead hands.
- Key specs
- Type Smartphone
- Operating system iOS
- Screen size 4.7 inches
- Internal memory 16 GB
- Carriers (US) AT&T
- Dimensions 5.44 x 2.64 x 0.28 in
- Weight 5.04 oz
- Released 2015-09-25