Apple CEO Tim Cook had just announced an anticipated reduced revenue for the fiscal 2019 first quarter. This confirms the initial fears that the latest iPhone models are not selling as well as expected during the holiday seasons. After posting a record US$88.3 billion revenue for Q1 last year, the Cupertino company has revised its forecasted revenue from $93 billion to $84 billion due to weaker iPhone sales.
Despite the challenging quarter, surprisingly Apple has set new revenue records in several emerging markets including Malaysia.
In his letter to investors, Tim Cook had mentioned:
We also expect to set all-time revenue records in several developed countries, including the United States, Canada, Germany, Italy, Spain, the Netherlands and Korea. And, while we saw challenges in some emerging markets, others set records, including Mexico, Poland, Malaysia and Vietnam.
Unfortunately, we won’t know exactly how much revenue does Apple make in Malaysia as their quarterly report is broken down by regions such as Americas, Europe, Greater China, Japan and Rest of Asia Pacific.
Since the FY 2019 Q1 is based on the last 3 months of 2018, it is possible that Apple had enjoyed an increase in sales in Malaysia during the 11.11 and 12.12 sales event. The iPhone X which is still a great device at the moment was offered for as low as RM3,299.
It is worth pointing out that an increase in revenue does not necessarily equate to more units sold and in fact, they will no longer disclose the number of units sold for each category beginning Q1 2019. This is somewhat an indication that Apple is expecting a decline in quantity and they are putting more emphasis on revenue to show growth.
If you look at the past year, Apple has increased its average price for its products. When the iPhone X was announced in 2017, it was the most expensive iPhone ever and it costs up to RM5,899 for the 256GB version. With the latest lineup, the iPhone XS Max model had broken a new price ceiling and it went as high as RM7,049 for the 512GB version. The “cheapest” new iPhone you can get is the iPhone XR which starts from RM3,599.
Apple has also significantly increased prices for other products as well. The new iPad Pro 2018 starts from RM3,499 for the base WiFi 64GB version and it could cost as much as RM8,199 for the top of the line Cellular version with 1TB of storage. That’s excluding the Smart keyboard folio and 2nd generation Apple Pencil which are also priced higher than its predecessor.
Even the MacBook Air, which is Apple’s supposedly entry-level laptop has a steep starting price of RM5,249. That variant comes with a Core i5 (i5-8210Y) processor with 8GB RAM and 128GB of storage.