Income growth and investment in mobile infrastructure in emerging markets such as China and India, present Apple with huge new markets for the iPhone. Sales of the iPhone following its Chinese product launch in 2009 were unimpressive, a result of compatibility issues with the proprietary 3G network technology run by China Mobile, the country’s largest mobile carrier. However, considerable growth in China mobile’s subscriber base and the launch of its first 4G network in 2014 have been a huge boost to sales of the 4G compatible iPhone 6. Apple’s sales in greater China now constitute 25% of its total sales and contribute half of the growth in total sales, having grown by 100% year on year during recent quarters. Current 4G penetration in China is only around 25%. A recent consumer survey conducted by BofA Merrill Lynch found that 50% of respondents who currently own an iPhone, expected to replace it within the next year. For the detailed investment case for Apple Inc, please see the most recent edition of The Leading Edge. (VIEW LINK)
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