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As iPhone sales fall again, Apple eyes 5G as the answer

Ads for the iPhone 11 at a storefront
Photo: Anusak Laowilas/NurPhoto via Getty Images

Apple delivered a generally positive earnings report on Wednesday, with CEO Tim Cook telling Reuters that iPhone 11 was off to a "very, very good start," despite sales falling 9.2% in the quarter, continuing a pattern that has been in place for the past year.

Why it matters: The iPhone is the bulk of Apple's business and critical to driving demand for its other products, but a report from Bloomberg, citing unnamed sources, said Apple expects iPhone sales to return to growth next year, thanks to the introduction of 5G.

  • The company will be entering the 5G arena at least a year behind companies including Samsung and Huawei.
  • "Apple aims to ship more than 200 million handsets in 2020 after introducing more than four new iPhone models, possibly including 4G and 5G models and a low-cost successor to the budget iPhone SE device," Bloomberg reported, based on information from the anonymous source.

The big picture: Apple reported revenue of $64 billion, up 2% from a year earlier, but the report marked the first time since CEO Tim Cook took over in 2011 that the company’s profit has declined in all four quarters of a fiscal year.

Go deeper... Apple: iPhone 11 off to "very, very good start"