This year was a great one to be an Apple shareholder. And looking ahead, things could be even better.
This week, analysts and industry researchers said Apple will debut new iPhones with modems in 2020 that let them connect to the ultra-fast 5G networks that carriers are deploying nationwide.
Meanwhile, Apple’s stock has soared, pushing the company’s market capitalization to $1.3 trillion—among the world’s highest. Indeed, a Bloomberg report this week said that Apple’s shares in 2019 have had their biggest annual gain since 2009.
Meanwhile, there’s been a lot of iPhone news this year, starting with iPhone camera sensor supplier Sony talking about how it’s trying to keep up with iPhone demand. We also learned this week that Apple’s budget-friendly iPhone XR is its best-selling phone this year.
Simply put, Apple has a lot momentum heading into 2020. Read on to find out why:
Apple’s Soaring Stock
Apple’s stock price has risen more than 80% since the start of the year. If the company’s share price remains at the same level, it would make for their best annual performance since 2009, according to Bloomberg, when Apple shares surged nearly 150%. In 2019, Apple’s shares opened at $157.92, and closed on Friday at $289.80. Due to that rise, Apple has added $530 billion to its market cap.
A look ahead to 5G
In a note to investors this week, Wedbush analyst Daniel Ives said that Apple will introduce “at least five iPhone versions” next year, with at least some of them able to connect to 5G networks. Ives predicts that 5G will be a major sales driver for Apple next year and could help drive Apple’s iPhone’s revenue by more than 10% compared to what happened in 2019. According to Ives, Apple will sell between 185 million and 190 million iPhones in 2019.
Apple’s ToTok problem
Apple removed the chat app ToTok from its App Store this week after security experts alleged that the United Arab Emirates government used the app to spy on users. According to reports, ToTok was able to monitor user conversations, and also track their locations and relationships. It’s unknown how many people, if any, were spied on, but the allegations were bad enough that Apple removed the app from its marketplace and said it would investigate the matter. Google also removed ToTok from its Google Play marketplace for Android devices.
Staying ahead of iPhone demand
Sony is having a hard time producing enough camera sensors to keep up with demand from Apple and other smartphone makers that it supplies, a Sony spokesperson said in an interview with Bloomberg this week. In some cases, Sony said, it’s been forced to apologize to its customers “because we just can’t make enough.” It’s unknown which suppliers have been affected by the shortfall, but Sony said it would keep its factory open through the holiday season to try to catch up.
The all-popular iPhone XR
It was a big year for the iPhone XR, market research firm Counterpoint Research said this week. The budget-friendly iPhone was the top-selling smartphone worldwide for four straight quarters, starting in the fourth quarter of 2018 and ending in the third quarter of 2019, Counterpoint said without disclosing the number of devices sold during the period (it charges clients for that information). But it did say that the iPhone XR’s 3% market share was enough to put it at the top.
One more thing…
Want to have a little fun to end the year? Check out this video from YouTube user MKBHD that showcases a gold and diamond-plated iPhone 11 Pro. The phone’s exterior was retrofitted with 24-karat gold and 137 diamonds by specialty phone accessories maker Caviar. Not bad for a $120,000 device.