What's Up With Apple: 5G iPhones Sales Dip, Tim Cook Speaks, and More

Research firm Strategy Analytics reported on Wednesday that global 5G smartphone shipments in the first quarter of this year totaled 136 million units. Apple Inc. (NASDAQ: AAPL) shipped more than 40 million units in the quarter, accounting for nearly 30% of the total market, nearly double the 15.8% share of second-place Oppo.

That was the good news. The less-good news is that 5G iPhone shipments dropped by 23% compared to the fourth quarter of 2020, when Apple shipped 52.2 million units. Samsung shipped 17 million 5G smartphones in the quarter, a sequential increase of 79%, and good enough for a 12.5% share of the global total.

Not everything is lining up perfectly for Samsung though, according to Woody Oh, a director at Strategy Analytics:

Samsung is growing very fast in 5G smartphones, but it does have a major portfolio gap in China. Samsung has extremely low presence in China, the world’s biggest 5G market, and this remains a significant drag on the vendor’s outlook. Conversely, Chinese vendors largely have no presence in the high value US market, and this will be a drag on their ability to grow revenue or profit.

Apple CEO Tim Cook gave an interview to French video publication Brut during a virtual appearance at the VivaTech conference currently running in Paris. As usual, Cook chose to emphasize Apple’s commitment to privacy and took a shot at proposed regulations that would “force sideloading on the iPhone.”

Sideloading, Cook said, “would destroy the security of the iPhone and a lot of the privacy initiatives that we’ve built into the App Store, where we have privacy nutrition labels and App Tracking Transparency… these things would not exist anymore.”

Cook also claimed that Android has “47 times more malware than iOS does.” He also had some comments on the development of Apple’s M1 chip, augmented reality and the intersection of health and technology.

One thing Cook chose not to discuss was the Apple Car. In response to a question, Cook said, “In terms of a car, I’ve gotta keep secrets, and there always has to be something up our sleeve.”

Finally, Variety reported Wednesday that Apple has hired Sam Miller, whose credits include TV series “Luther” and “I May Destroy You,” to direct an eight-episode psychological thriller, “Surface,” starring British actress Gugu Mbatha-Raw, currently appearing in the Disney+ series “Loki.” Variety has more details on the production and other actors set to appear in the show.