Apple's Q1 iPhone sales VS Samsung: Guess who's winning?

Net sales for Apple in their reported Q1 earnings this afternoon showed the iPhone at odds with the rest of the company. Mac, iPad, and Services net sales were up compared to this same quarter one year ago. The category called "Wearables, Home, and Accessories" also rose in net sales year-over-year. The iPhone category was the only category where net sales did not rise.

The decline in revenue for the iPhone category hit 15% this quarter, while Apple's other products and services grew by 19% when tabulated as a single category. On its own, the Services category reached its all-time high at $10.9 billion USD. That's up 19% as well when compared to this same quarter one year ago.

Apple attempted to pad the inevitable negative public blow due to a lower iPhone revenue and less-than-expected overall revenue. To do this, they pulled out an all-time EPS of $4.18, as well as all-time highs for three categories: Services revenue, Mac revenue, and revenue from "Wearables, Home, and Accessories." Growth in those categories, in order, were 19%, 9%, and 33%.

While it wasn't the highest it's ever been, iPad category revenue was up 17% compared to this same quarter one year ago. Apple's iPhone net sales revenue for iPhone in Apple's Q1 2019 was $51.98 billion. That's all reported by Apple itself.

The closest comparison we can do with the company's biggest competitor Samsung at this moment is as follows. Samsung's Q3 2018 "Mobile and IT" segment saw KRW 25.47 trillion ($22.78 billion USD) consolidated revenue. The same segment's consolidated revenue in Q4 2017* (not yet reported for 2018) was KRW 24.91 trillion ($22.27 billion USD). That's as reported by Samsung itself (with current direct exchange rates from KRW to USD).

*Samsung's financial Q4 is the last three months of the year for the year reported. Apple's Q1 for 2019 is the same as Samsung's Q4 2018, both reporting the last three months of the year 2018. We do not yet have Samsung's sales numbers for the quarter this year, but we have those numbers for 2017, as well as the most recent quarter in 2018 (that's Q3).

It might be that the winning strategy is moving to Mac and iPad, quarter after quarter, but still: Apple continues to print money when it comes to iPhone. iPhone sales aren't currently going up, but they are well and above those of any other company's smartphone sales by a significant margin.