As Big Tech firm Apple rakes in billions in revenue, figures revealed that it is now richer than 80 percent of countries around the world.
An article by Apple Insider pointed out that the company’s revenue for the last four quarters came in at $387.5 billion. It easily surpassed the gross domestic product (GDP) of Malaysia for the same period of $372.7 billion. However, it fell just behind the Philippines’ $393.6 billion and Denmark’s $395.7 billion.
The company, founded by Steve Jobs and two others, is not far from overtaking economic powerhouses such as Egypt ($402.8 billion) and the United Arab Emirates ($409.9 billion). However, it has a long way to go in beating the Netherlands’ $1.02 trillion GDP – the lowest in the trillion-dollar club.
Apple’s $35.9 billion gross margin for the third quarter (Q3) of 2022 alone easily put it ahead of Sudan ($35.15 billion) and behind Estonia ($36.3 billion). Its annual gross margin of $167.9 billion put it in between Algeria’s $164.6 billion and Qatar’s $179.6 billion.
Apple’s Q3 net profit of $19.4 billion put it ahead of the West African nation of Mali ($19.2 billion), while its annual net profit of $99.6 billion put it ahead of Ethiopia in the continent’s east.
Moreover, sales from Apple’s gadgets easily surpassed the GDPs of other countries.
The iPhone’s revenue for Q3 2022 alone amounted to $40.67 billion, putting it ahead of Bolivia’s $39.98 billion. Its total revenue of $201.7 billion for the past four quarters put the iPhone ahead of Ukraine, which recorded a GDP of $198.3 billion in 2021.
Annual sales of other Apple devices such as iPad tablets and Mac desktop computers also managed to surpass the GDPs of other countries. For instance, the iPad’s $30.4 billion beat the $29.9 billion GDP of the Macau special administrative region in China. The Mac’s $37.8 billion annual revenue easily surpassed Estonia’s $36.3 billion GDP.
“Apple’s billions upon billions in revenue is large enough to make it more valuable than most countries,” wrote Malcolm Owen, the author of the Apple Insider piece.
Apple’s power, influence growing alongside its monetary value
Writing for the Western Journal, conservative commentator Jared Miller pointed out the absurdity of Apple surpassing the GDP of many nations.
“It is disturbing to find out that Apple, one of the largest tech companies to date, has an income that rivals most countries,” he noted. “The tech giant’s annual revenue dwarfs that of the majority of the world’s countries by a significant margin.”
Given this, Miller remarked that the power and influence of tech companies such as Apple grows alongside their monetary value. He cited the California-based firm’s “documented habit” of removing and suspending apps it does not approve of.
In one instance, Apple promptly kicked out free speech social media platform Parler from its App Store following the Jan. 6, 2021 Capitol siege. It was only allowed back into the App Store in late April 2021, albeit with “enhanced content moderation infrastructure in place.”
Apple later suspended the Russian VKontakte social media platform in line with Russia’s annexation of and referendum in four regions previously under Ukrainian control. During the early days of the Russia-Ukraine war, Apple heavily restricted other applications like Apple Pay and removed various other Russian-sponsored media outlets from the App Store. (Related: Google, Apple cut off access to ordinary Russians, meaning they can do the same to Americans at any time.)
“It seems that Apple is more than happy to jump at the chance to suppress discourse in favor of whichever cause it deems righteous at the time,” Miller noted.
Ironically, the conservative commentator noted that Apple’s actions toward Russia were a stark contrast with its approach toward China. Miller pointed out that the company “almost completely turned over private control of its Chinese-based data centers to the Chinese government,” citing a 2021 New York Times piece.
“It would not be a stretch, then, to imagine Apple giving over the private control of their servers and data centers to a Biden-like government entity that allows censorship and monitoring of American citizenry.”
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