1 Number That Defined Apple in 2012


For as much as we talk about the rise of Android, Apple remains a dominant supplier that, by most accounts, collects the vast majority of operating profits attributed to smart handset sales.

How big a share are we talking? Presuming not much change from the year prior -- and there's no reason to believe there was -- more than 70%.

Samsung likely challenged for the remainder thanks to strong sales of the Galaxy S III handset. Google also looked formidable with impressive interest in the Nexus 4. An inventory shortage looks like a missed opportunity.

Can the iPhone continue to collect the lion's share of profits? Expanded carrier distribution could help, granting access to consumers who might have previously been shut out of owning the device. But distribution isn't the only factor at work here. I address the full thesis in the video below. Watch, then weigh in using the comments box below.

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Fool contributor Tim Beyers is a member of the Motley Fool Rule Breakers stock-picking team and the Motley Fool Supernova Odyssey I mission. He owned shares of Apple and Google at the time of publication. Check out Tim's web home and portfolio holdings or connect with him on Google+, Tumblr, or Twitter, where he goes by @milehighfool. You can also get his insights delivered directly to your RSS reader.The Motley Fool owns shares of Apple and Google. Motley Fool newsletter services have recommended buying shares of Google and Apple.Motley Fool newsletter services have recommended creating a bull call spread position in Apple. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days.

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