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Dog bites man, tonight at 11.Image: Pablo Blazquez Dominguez / gettyBy Jack Morse2019-01-30 00:05:49 UTC
It turns out Apple products are good for more than just spying on people.
In an otherwise dreary Jan. 29 earnings call, Apple executives had one standout bit of cheery news for wary investors: Apple News supposedly has the largest audience of any news app. Specifically, according to Apple, the service has 85 million monthly active users.
That number, up from 70 million unique users in 2016, paints a picture of a growing service that is slowly rising to challenge Facebook’s hold on the media ecosystem. But it still has a long way to go before it manages to dethrone the Boy King of Silicon Valley.
Notably, in 2018, the Pew Research Center found that 43 percent of Americans get their news from the Mark Zuckerberg-helmed company. Assuming that number hasn’t changed much (which given the ongoing scandals is maybe a stretch), that roughly translates to 141 million people. Although, of course, that counts people using Facebook in any capacity — not just the mobile app.
We just got our first Apple News numbers in a long time, Apple News now has 85 million MAU (up from 70 million in 2016 the last time they shared data) $aapl
— Karissa Bell (@karissabe) January 29, 2019
However, Apple isn’t sitting on its hands when it comes to news distribution, and is reportedly working on a subscription service that includes news.
Today’s Apple News brag came at the same time the company had to cop to a not so exciting reality: Apple isn’t selling as many phones as it used to. On the call, executives noted that iPhone revenue had dropped 15 percent from last year.
Maybe Apple fans haven’t gotten the Apple-generated news that the iPhone XR is the “most popular” iPhone since it became available for sale. Thankfully, we hear there’s an app for that.