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Apple Continues to Take More Than Half of Mobile Phone Industry Profits

Despite a sequential drop in iPhone sales in the third calendar quarter of 2011 as customers held out for the iPhone 4S, Apple once again seized over half of the profits generated by leading mobile phone manufacturers during the quarter, according to a new research report by Cannacord Genuity analyst T. Michael Walkley and shared by Forbes. According to the study's estimates, Apple raked in 52% of the overall profits during the quarter, down slightly from 57% in the second calendar quarter but up from 47% in the year-ago quarter that also had the then-new iPhone 4 on the market.
In an epic reversal of fortunes, Mr. Walkley pointed out that in 2007, Nokia had 67% of operating profits while Apple had just 4%. Today, while Apple has 52% of industry profits, Nokia has been relegated its rival’s former position with just 4% of operating profits.
As noted in a report from AllThingsD on the same research note, Walkley predicts that the launch of the iPhone 4S will spur even further growth for Apple, pushing the company to take over 60% of industry profits in the final calendar quarter of 2011.


Walkley is not the only observer to routinely release estimates of mobile phone manufacturer profit shares, as asymco's Horace Dediu performs a similar analysis each quarter. Dediu's numbers have typically come in 5-10 percentage points higher for Apple than Walkley's estimates have, but the trends seen by each analyst are certainly consistent: Aside from some natural ebb and flow due to iPhone release cycles, Apple is continuing to increase its dominant share of mobile phone industry profits despite shipping only a small fraction of total units.

Update: Dediu has just posted his Q3 estimates, pegging Apple at 56% of industry profits.

Related roundup: iPhone 6

Top Rated Comments

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39 months ago
Blah blah blah but Android's better it's on more handsets blah blah blah people who call it cheap just don't understand and are sheep blah blah blah Apple's dying and will be out of business in 3 days blah blah blah we're not fragmented garbage and the next phone has a bigger screen so it'll change everything the same way the last 67 Android phones that came out this week did..... :rolleyes::apple::D
Rating: 22 Votes
39 months ago
"In an epic reversal of fortunes, Mr. Walkley pointed out that in 2007, Nokia had 67% of operating profits while Apple had just 4%. Today, while Apple has 52% of industry profits, Nokia has been relegated its rival’s former position with just 4% of operating profits."

OWN3D....
Rating: 9 Votes
39 months ago
Apple makes more money than all the android handset makers combined on smart phones.

Microsoft makes more money off Android than Google does...


The android business plan is really working out very well.
Rating: 8 Votes
39 months ago

Pick those pockets clean!!!!


Consumers don't seem to mind paying (or paying more) for quality or when they perceive a better value proposition. All my Apple gear over the years has been worth every single cent.

There is very little buyers' remorse among Apple customers. Which is why they can command the level of brand loyalty they do. That takes a great deal of heard work, and it must be earned. Apple has earned my business, and they continue to earn it.
Rating: 6 Votes
39 months ago

Blah blah blah but Android's better it's on more handsets blah blah blah people who call it cheap just don't understand and are sheep blah blah blah Apple's dying and will be out of business in 3 days blah blah blah we're not fragmented garbage and the next phone has a bigger screen so it'll change everything the same way the last 67 Android phones that came out this week did..... :rolleyes::apple::D


This is pwnage.
Rating: 6 Votes
39 months ago

It's funny how Apple fanatics get excited about Apple raking in profits(ie their money).

Not really. Such strong profitability demonstrates a secure, viable future, along with continued reinvestment in future products and the ecosystem. Apple doing well is a good thing for Apple customers, so long as the customers don't feel like they're being bent over a barrel on price.

And, from what I can tell, they don't.
Rating: 6 Votes
39 months ago
Samsung's getting saltier and saltier by the quarter.
Rating: 5 Votes
39 months ago

Mazel Tov Apple.

As for negative comments towards other phones/OS's - leave well enough alone. You can celebrate Apple's accomplishments without dissing the competition.


What's good for the goose is good for the gander, and I have NO qualms about getting down in the mud and shoving Fandroids' faces in the filthy reality. ;)
Rating: 5 Votes
39 months ago

For someone who is obviously a fan of Apple - and no doubt Jobs - you certainly aren't leading by example. But if you get your jollies that way - feel free. Says more about you than anything else.


Yes, it's completely unlike Jobs OR Apple to parade successes. Of course, it's not like they have opened every single keynote with a string of figures and showing comparisons to flailing competitors for years now.... they were always above such things..... oh wait. :rolleyes:
Rating: 4 Votes
39 months ago

Well everyone else phones drop in price after about 3 months. iPhone stays at 199 on contract compared to other phones dropping in price.

iPhone4 was over priced for at least 6 months if not longer. Heck it is debatable if it is still over priced at $99.

Also what happens if the carriers design to say we will give Apple the same deal we give everyone else and that would raise the price of the phone about $100 over night.

Apple is still not passing on the profits and not passing on the savings of keeping the same phone model for 12 months.


Other phones price drops because there is no demand for them. Not because the OEMs are excited to give discounts to their customers. Apple doesn't need to drop prices because people buy their products no matter what.

Again, saying "overpriced" is silly. If the phones are selling (which they are) there's only two conclusions, 1) they're not overpriced, and people are just fine with paying for a good product, or 2) iPhone users are sheep who worship Steve Jobs and build shrines to the Kool-Aid man.

Common sense and logic dictates the answer would be #1, fandroid logic dictates it would be 2. I'll stick with the former.
Rating: 4 Votes

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