Has the Apple Watch really surpassed ‘peak iPod’?

The Apple Watch has now surpassed the mighty iPod at the height of its popularity, according to one number-crunching Apple analyst.

According to Asymco analyst Horace Dediu, Apple brought in $4.2 billion in revenue for the Apple Watch during Q4 2018, which he reckons eclipses the iPod’s best return of $4 billion back in 2007.

“This analysis helped me conclude the Apple Watch overtook the historic ‘peak iPod’ which occurred in the fourth quarter of 2007 at $4 billion,” Dediu claims (via Apple Insider). “My Watch revenue estimate was $4.2 billion in the fourth quarter of 2018.”

Given the iPod was a cultural phenomenon that catapulted Apple from niche computer maker to global style icon and tech trendsetter, that’s quite a bold statement and quite hard to quantify, even if the numbers do back it up.

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Apple doesn’t officially release the specific revenue for the Apple Watch, it simply falls into a Wearables, Home and Accessories category alongside devices like AirPods and HomePod.

Apple CEO Tim Cook hinted that the overall wearables category, including AirPods was topping the iPod, but didn’t specifically mention the Apple Watch. He told CNBC in January: “On a trailing basis, … the revenue for wearables is already 50 percent more than iPod was at its peak.”

Deidu says some proprietary data modelling as well as the various clues left by Apple’s financial reports over the years gives him confidence in the profession that the Apple Watch beats ‘Peak iPod’.

He reckons revenues from the Apple Watch will be boosted by a further 25% next year, putting the iPod further in the rear view mirror. Of course, the average starting price of an Apple Watch today is much higher than the iPod’s in 2007, so it’s still likely the company sold more iPods in 2007 than Apple Watch units in 2018.

Even if the Apple Watch is now outselling the iPod, it’s far-fetched to suggest its impact comes anywhere close to that of the iPod.

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