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Mobile carrier stores and online outlets control about three-quarters of iPhone sales

Consumer Intelligence Research Partners (CIRP) says mobile carrier stores and online outlets control about three-quarters of the sales of iPhones, and 55% of the mobile phone market overall. 

The rest of the phones are sold by Best Buy, Amazon, mass merchants, and of course Apple Stores and the Apple website. Beyond their power as retailers, the mobile carriers drive sales with the promotions they choose to offer, according to CIRP. Trade-in deals that motivate specific model purchases are common, and co-op advertising for mobile carriers subsidized by smartphone manufacturers is the norm.

In 2008 Apple released the first iPhone exclusively on the AT&T GSM mobile network. With their CDMA networks, Verizon came next in early 2011, followed by Sprint later that year. Though T-Mobile used a similar GSM network to AT&T, they were the fourth of the major carriers to offer iPhones starting in 2013. 

“Because of this staged rollout, and differences in their customer bases, Apple share of smartphone sales varies dramatically by carrier,” says CIRP. “In 2023, iPhone had its largest share at AT&T, at 48% of smartphone sales. It had its lowest share at T-Mobile and discount and regional carriers, with 28% of sales.”

Article provided with permission from AppleWorld.Today
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