Apple reported record revenue, record profits, record iPhone and iPad unit sales, and despite being in the post-PC era where PC sales are dropping, strong growth in Mac sales. That’s not to mention record revenue and profits in iTunes, App stores, and Apple’s retail stores.
So, why did Apple’s stock take a bath? It’s all about numbers. Those you can count and those you cannot even see.
Numbers vs. Anti-Numbers
There is an interesting oddity when it comes to numbers and Apple. Each quarter Apple reveals their latest financial results.
That includes total revenue, total profits, and individual sales numbers for Mac, iPhone, and iPad (sprinkled with other numbers from iTunes and retail store).
Those are real numbers. Apple is a publicly traded company, so, for better or worse, what Apple tells us is a pretty accurate reflection of reality.
Think real sales numbers, not shipments. Here’s the oddity. Among the company’s many competitors which ones also divulge similar numbers?
Google? Nope. Microsoft? No. Samsung? Snort. Amazon? Uh uh. How about Motorola, HTC, Nokia, et al. Nope, nada, zilch.
Only Apple makes those numbers public, quarter after quarter, for all the world to see. Everyone else uses anti-numbers.
Sharing The Market
In just the past two days I read detailed reports where Android continues to gain martketshare at the expense of Apple’s iOS devices, iPhone and iPad.
In each report, Apple’s smartphone and tablet marketshare continues to drop when compared to Android. Here’s the problem with Kantar and IDC’s anti-numbers.
They’re not real numbers. Not one of the manufacturers competing with Apple announced their own numbers to compare to Apple’s numbers. So, where did Kantar and IDC get their numbers?
They guessed. They estimated. They threw together a spreadsheet and did a little research and tried to extrapolate total market and shares for each individual manufacturer.
Guesses. Estimates. Anti-numbers.
Where’s The Beef?
If, according to the anti-number makers, Apple’s smartphone marketshare has dipped into the low single digits, why don’t the others reveal their actual sales numbers and put Apple to shame? Samsung is considered the market leader in total smartphone shipments, but where are their real numbers?
Samsung’s most recent financials are high level only. The conglomerate posted record revenue for the quarter, topping even Apple, but came in with lower than expected profits; barely half of Apple’s profits. How many smartphones did Samsung ship? The company would not say. How many Galaxy S4 models did Samsung sell? The company would not say.
See the problem here?
Apple uses real numbers. Analysts, researchers, and Apple’s competitors all use anti-numbers; guesses, estimates, and percentages. But not real numbers. How can Apple grow marketshare when Apple is the only company using real numbers?
Apple’s smartphone, tablet, and PC competitors are content to allow guesses and estimates rule, rather than be humiliated in public by comparing their actual sales numbers (not shipments) with Apple’s real numbers.