Apple’s iPhones Comprise 10% of US Mobile Market, Yet Earn 50% of Profits

Recent analyses have highlighted the significant influence of Apple’s iPhone on the broader mobile phone sector. According to a study by comScore, approximately 10% of mobile users in the United States have an iPhone, a figure that encompasses all mobile users, not just those with smartphones. This is a remarkable achievement considering the skepticism Apple faced from critics who doubted their market penetration goals just four years earlier.

In the U.S. mobile handset market, Apple ranks fourth, trailing behind Samsung, LG, and Motorola, according to comScore.

These companies continue to dominate the feature phone segment, which contributes to their larger shares of the market, whereas Apple exclusively offers smartphones.

While Google’s Android devices lead in U.S. smartphone market share, capturing nearly half of the market, Apple holds a 27 percent share. However, a separate analysis by Canaccord Genuity (reported by Forbes) reveals that market share figures do not tell the whole story. Apple secures 52 percent of all profits in the mobile phone industry, a statistic that includes profits from both smartphones and feature phones.

Samsung emerges as Apple’s primary competitor in terms of profit generation, claiming 29 percent of the industry’s earnings.

Samsung’s approach to the market has proven effective. Other manufacturers, however, are barely making a dent in terms of profit.

Nokia, once the dominant force in the mobile industry with two-thirds of all profits in 2007, now only accounts for four percent. Companies like RIM are either barely profitable or are incurring significant losses. Motorola, for instance, has reported losses each year since 2007, which casts Google’s $10 billion acquisition in a peculiar light.

This data serves as a reminder that Apple must continue to innovate to maintain its leading position.


Brian is a dedicated writer for TUAW, where he shares his insights and expertise on all things Apple. With a deep love for technology, Brian covers a wide range of topics, from the latest iPhone and iPad releases to the intricacies of macOS and Apple Watch features. His clear and engaging writing style makes complex tech topics accessible to all readers. Brian’s enthusiasm for Apple products shines through in every article he writes.