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How Long People Need to Work for an iPhone

 2 min read / 

With a market capitalisation of $940.3bn, Apple is getting close to becoming the world’s first trillion dollar company. The hefty $999 price tag on the iPhone X did not deter consumers like some analysts expected. Across the world, shoppers reached deep into their pockets to purchase the 10-year anniversary device which led to higher-than-expected sales in Apple’s second quarter. How much the average worker has to labour in order to afford the new smartphone varies greatly across cities, countries and continents. UBS analysts pulled data from selected cities around the globe, shedding light on the geographic disparity in affluence level and associated purchasing power. Someone in Hong Kong needs to work twice as long as their counterpart in Zurich to be able to afford an iPhone X. This gap pales in comparison to the 30-fold difference between that same worker and someone earning an average wage in Nigeria’s financial capital. Offering cheaper alternatives to the iPhone has proven to be a good strategy for Apple’s competitors as smartphones have rapidly expanded across income demographics in all areas of the world. The final quarter of 2017, however, saw the first ever decline in smartphone sales. Apple’s range of products at varying price points proved effective in pushing the company past Samsung, its main competitor. Given the recent slowdown in smartphone volume, it remains to be seen which demographic will dominate the sector’s revenue trends and whether Apple’s strategy is sustainable.

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