How many iPhones have been sold till date?

How many iPhones have been sold till date? A billion! There had been a rumor going around that Apple was nearing this magic number of total iPhones sold for a few weeks now. And this was just based on the cumulative sales numbers Apple releases quarterly (like the most recent quarter) of all iPhone models sold till date. Today it was confirmed (via 9to5mac) that this is indeed not just a rumor but a hard fact through a leaked internal Apple email! Insane achievement indeed considering a few things,

  • Steve Jobs famously said that he/Apple will be happy if they were able to capture 1% of the Global smartphone market, when the original iPhone was released almost a decade ago. A billion iPhones definitely seems a lot more than 1%
  • Considering the profit margins (almost 40% consistently) for Apple on these iPhones, the sheer amount of dollars the company has made in profit from just one product line definitely must have created some kind of a world record
All iPhone models till date (Image source: keyword-suggestions.com)

All iPhone models till date (Image source: keyword-suggestions.com)

Oh and by the way, I am sure many of the readers by now are asking how does this number compare to Android phones sold. Head over to this detailed Benedict Evans piece on cumulative number of iPhones and Android phones sold till date. It clears a lot of misconceptions on this subject like... 

So, for March 2016:

630m iPhones and 250m iPads, for a total of 880m

1.3-1.4bn Google Android phones, and 150-200m Google Android tablets.

Maybe 450m additional Android phones and 200m Android tablets in China, not connected to Google services

For a total base of 2.4-2.5bn iOS and Android phones, and (say) 600m-750m iOS and Android tablets.

Some of these numbers are quite a long way from what people not digging deep into the data might expect. I posted this not-entirely-scientific poll on Twitter last week and got the following wildly wrong results. The correct answer is under 2.5x, but 2/3 of people voted for over 4x, which would require 2.5-3bn Google Android phones.
— Benedict Evans

Also look into this post from Horace Dediu on this topic for more affirmation on this insane feat  achieved by Apple and the iPhone.

The iPhone is not only the best selling mobile phone but also the best selling music player, the best selling camera, the best selling video screen and the best selling computer of all time... It is, quite simply, the best selling product of all time.
— Horace Dediu