Pando

Apple pundits are wrong again as the company reportedly beats Samsung in smartphone sales

By Nathaniel Mott , written on January 29, 2015

From The News Desk

Apple has done two things few ever thought it would be able to manage at the same time: made the most profit in a single quarter of any company in history, and sell as many smartphones as Samsung, the company with which it has the fiercest rivalry.

Only one of those things was supposed to happen. People have been saying for years that Apple would focus on profits at the expense of marketshare, while others said it would have to prioritize marketshare for it to have a fighting chance against Samsung.

Apple did both, and in so doing, it showed that it might be time for people to shut up about the company's future prospects. Everyone is wrong in at least one sense, and all bets made about the company's future always turn out to be at least partly incorrect.

Pundits said it shouldn't (or wouldn't) make a bigger iPhone because of something Steve Jobs said; now iPhones are bigger than ever. Others said it needed to make a cheaper iPhone; now it's sold as many units as its biggest rival without having to lower its prices.

Maybe this last quarter was just a fluke. Perhaps the iPhone 6 was just a prank that went wonderfully awry, and Apple really plans to go back to its 3.5-inch screens with devices that either cost an insane amount or are cheaper than their competitors, but I doubt it.

Either way it's clear that Apple punditry often turns out to be wrong in the end. So how about we save concerns about the Apple Watch for when it debuts, or stop pontificating on when it will finally die, or cease this pointless back-and-forth about the company?

There's only one winner in the Apple pundit-sphere, and it's neither its fans nor its critics: it's just Apple, which has proved that, for at least one quarter, it can have it all.

[illustration by Brad Jonas]