Apple's iPhone records the slowest growth to date. Apple CEO TIM Cook concedes during conference call that the iPhone could decline.

Apple is supposedly booming. The company has recently revealed that it has had one of its best-ever quarters. The recent financial reports highlight that Apple has recorded $18.4 billion profits. Even the iPhone had a record-setting year in 2015. So, it might come as a surprise to some that the iPhone might have become saturated.

How, if it had a record-setting year, could the iPhone have become saturated? The iPhone usually has record-breaking years, but now the increases have only become very marginal. Growth for the handset is at its slowest, having climbed up just $300,000 on the previous year’s figures. That means the figure for Apple’s iPhone is now at 74.8 million.

Consequently, now it seems that the flagship phones are almost flat-lining. Apple’s CEO, Tim Cook, discussed the figures in a conference call with analysts. He forecasted, “We do think iPhone units will decline in the quarter. We don’t think that they will decline to the levels you’ll talk about.” Consequently, the company has now effectively conceded that the iPhone might have reached a saturation point.

There are a few factors behind such forecasts. Firstly, because the iPhone had higher than usual returns in the second fiscal quarter of 2015. This has laid down a very high bar that the iPhone will probably not be able to match in 2016. Another factor might be a general drop in exchange rates such as the ruble and real. Consequently, it’s perhaps not surprising Apple is predicting a decline in iPhone sales this year.

That would be the first time the iPhones have had such a drop. However, this doesn’t mean that Apple is about to scrap the iPhone. Quite the contrary, in fact, as the iPhone 7 is widely expected to launch in September 2016. Furthermore, there’s an iPhone 5se in the pipeline as well. Almost any phone series reaches a saturation point at some stage.

So we can expect plenty more from Apple’s iPhone. However, the handset’s saturation could mean a bigger refresh cycle for the series after the iPhone 7.

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