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Apple CEO Labels China ‘Most Competitive Market’ Amid Decline in iPhone Sales

Amidst a backdrop of lackluster quarterly results, Apple CEO Tim Cook has underscored China’s status as “the most competitive market in the world.” The tech giant reported a decline in revenue, largely attributed to weakening demand in China and heightened competition from Huawei. Notably, Apple’s revenue dropped by 4.3% to USD 90.75 billion, with iPhone sales taking a significant hit, plummeting by 10.5% to USD 46 billion.

Greater China, encompassing mainland China, Hong Kong, and Taiwan, witnessed an 8.1% year-on-year revenue decline, totaling USD 16.4 billion. Despite the challenges, Cook remains optimistic about China’s long-term prospects, emphasizing a positive viewpoint, albeit acknowledging the prevailing competitive landscape.

Counterpoint Research data revealed a 19.1% year-on-year decline in iPhone sales in China for the January-to-March quarter, attributed to Huawei’s resurgence, particularly in the premium smartphone segment. However, industry experts anticipate a potential rebound for Apple, citing an impending pent-up demand cycle and the anticipated release of the AI-driven iPhone 16 model.

While challenges persist, Cook highlighted notable achievements in other markets. Apple achieved an all-time revenue record in Indonesia, signaling vast untapped potential in Southeast Asia. Cook’s visit to Indonesia and Vietnam in April further underscored Apple’s commitment to exploring manufacturing possibilities in these regions.

India emerged as another bright spot for Apple, with strong double-digit growth and a new March-quarter revenue record. Cook reiterated India’s significance as an exciting market, emphasizing its strategic focus on operational and supply chain enhancements.

Despite headwinds, Apple remains bullish about its future, evident in its announcement of the largest share repurchase plan to date. The company’s robust financial strategy and ongoing investments in generative AI signal confidence in its trajectory. Apple’s shares surged nearly 7% in extended trading following the news.

Looking ahead, Apple hinted at upcoming product launches powered by AI, reflecting its commitment to innovation and customer-centric offerings. With China maintaining its status as a pivotal market, Apple continues to deepen its ties while expanding production in Southeast Asia and India, affirming its dedication to global growth and market leadership.

Sadhna B

Sadhna B

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