Apple CEO Cook: China’s supply and demand have improved significantly, discounts are not inventory clearance

Apple Inc. released its fiscal third-quarter earnings today, and CEO Tim Cook said in an interview that the company will “carefully” consider spending decisions amid a slowing economy. Previous reports have pointed out that Apple will slow spending and hiring of some teams in 2023.


Spend cautiously, revenue will accelerate
“We believe in investing in a downturn, and we’ve always done that. We’ve always found that it makes us stronger on the other hand,” Cook said on Thursday. “That’s how we treat this economy. A downturn mentality. Obviously, we need to be thoughtful when deciding where to invest.”

Boosted by better-than-expected iPhone sales, Apple’s fiscal third-quarter results slightly beat Wall Street expectations, but some products, such as Macs and wearables, missed expectations.

Cook said in the interview that he expects revenue to accelerate in the fiscal fourth quarter despite “softening in some areas.” Cook said he believed “macroeconomic headwinds” affected the company in the fiscal third quarter, including its wearables and digital advertising businesses. Tight supply also affected Macs and iPads in the fiscal third quarter, but demand for iPads remained strong, he said.

Discounts in China
Cook said both supply and demand in China had improved “significantly” in June. “We had some very strong results during the 618 shopping festival,” Cook said.

Apple’s official website recently launched a rare 4-day season of discounts. From July 29 to August 1, consumers can save up to 600 yuan on products such as the iPhone 13 if they pay in the designated way. Some analysts pointed out that Apple may be clearing inventory to make way for the iPhone 14 released in September.

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