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The earphones that make more money than Vodacom

A single division of the technology giant is larger than almost any company in our country.

It may seem unusual, but it is just the harsh reality, Apple’s wireless headphones already produce more than $ 12 billion per year. These small devices represent 10% of the company’s total incomes and more than almost any South-African company revenue.

  1. Sasol $14.8 B
  2. Apple Airpods $12 
  3. Standard Bank Group $9 B
  4. Old Mutual $8.2 B
  5. Nedbank $7.7 B
  6. Vodacom $5.99 B

“To exemplify locally, the revenues generated by the AirPods are far greater than those of Standard Bank Group, Old Mutual or Nedbank,” said Cristian Rennella, CEO and co-founder of

The Apple gadget turned out to be the fastest-growing segment of the most valuable company in the world. According to Forbes, the market value of Apple is $961.3 B followed by Microsoft ($946.5 B) and Amazon ($916.1 B)

Here you have the complete list of the 12 biggest companies in South Africa:

The impact of AirPods on Apple’s businesses

So, to better understand the importance of these headphones, let’s take a look at Apple’s best-selling product: the iPhone.

From the year 2017 to today, nearly 215 million devices have been sold per year. With an approximate value of US $ 1,000 for each device, the average annual inflow reaches about USD $ 215 billion, that is, more than 80% of Apple’s total turnover.

When Apple launched wireless headphones called AirPods in 2016, nobody could expect the success they had in the market. The initial idea was to generate more revenue by offering them as a secondary product without changing the price of their phones. It was a really smart move that generated the launch of a complement that would increase the company’s performance, but the success of the AirPods greatly exceeded expectations, positioning itself as much more than just an iPhone accessory.

Will we still use AirPods in the future?

Before anticipating the future behaviour of AirPod in the market, we must consider different aspects.

If you consider that since its launch approximately 100 million AirPods were sold and that Apple has an installed base of 900 million iPhones, a large percentage of iPhone users currently use third-party headphones or directly not wireless headphones.

Analyzing the variation in consumption in previous years, it is easy to realize that it will continue to grow at very high levels. There are rumours that Apple will launch an operating system for these products in 2020, so applications such as TTYL and Yac are already preparing to adapt to this change and be leaders in the audio market.

What will be the future of Apple?

There are currently no major differences between Apple or other brands’ smartphones, so one of the ways in which Apple can increase its revenue is by building an ecosystem of apps and gadgets. This differentiation would also generate an increase in sales on iPhones, and create new products like the Apple Card. So, the future success of Apple depends on its ability to create a complete ecosystem.

The report was provided by

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