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Fact: Apple reveals it has 900 million iPhones in the wild

The company has never provided the number, which has strong implications for the growth of Apple’s all-important services business.

Fact: Apple reveals it has 900 million iPhones in the wild
[Photo: Flickr user Paul Hudson]

Apple dropped a very meaningful little nugget during its earnings announcement today. It now has 900 million iPhones in action throughout the world.

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Apple said its total device ownership grew from 1.3 billion devices at the end of January to 1.4 billion active devices by the end of the year.

The number of active iPhones is important because the devices are used to buy the majority of Apple services. With iPhone sales slowing, analysts will be especially interested to see what Apple has to say about the performance of its services business (the App Store, Apple Music, iCloud, etc), which is expected to pick up the slack, revenue-wise. Apple has said it wants to reach $48.6 billon in services revenue per year by 2020.

The percentage of device owners who subscribe to at least one service has been growing quickly, said Apple CFO Luca Maestri.

Today, Apple reported $10.9 billion in services revenue. FactSet analysts had expected $10.8 billion. The company reported a profit margin of 62.8% for services.

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About the author

Fast Company Senior Writer Mark Sullivan covers emerging technology, politics, artificial intelligence, large tech companies, and misinformation. An award-winning San Francisco-based journalist, Sullivan's work has appeared in Wired, Al Jazeera, CNN, ABC News, CNET, and many others.

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