2022's macroeconomic headwinds lead many consumers to pull back their spending on tech. As a result, many of the world's most valuable companies suffered steep stock declines.
Apple's (NASDAQ: AAPL) share prices fell nearly 27% throughout last year, but still managed to do better than other FAANG components like Alphabet and Amazon, which saw their stock prices stumble 39% and 49%, respectively, in 2022. Apple's stock managed a partial recovery in 2023 and is up 19% year to date. However, it still has more work to do. That suggests a buying opportunity for investors hoping to benefit from the effort.
Apple is home to a robust, reliable business that has a history of offering consistent long-term gains. Here's why a sell-off makes Apple's stock a screaming buy.
Apple is maximizing profits in its iPhone segment
In fiscal 2022, Apple's iPhone segment was responsible for 52% of its revenue, with services accounting for 19.8%. That means any steps to maximize profits in its smartphone business will likely be positive for Apple's outlook.
In January, Bloomberg revealed Apple has plans to decrease its dependency on other tech companies for iPhone components and move to increase in-house production of various components. The tech giant will reportedly begin producing a custom Wi-Fi/Bluetooth chip, ending partnerships with Broadcom and Qualcomm. Additionally, reports say Apple will start using custom displays as early as 2024, moving away from Samsung- and LG-produced screens. Utilizing more in-house components in the iPhones will likely boost profit margins as it ends costly partnerships with outside companies.
Apple has had success moving to custom tech components in the past as evidenced by its Mac lineup. The company announced in June 2020 that it would stop using Intel processors in its Macs and move to homegrown chips called Apple Silicon. Since the third quarter of 2020, Apple's Mac revenue has increased 62%, going from $7.1 billion then to $11.5 billion in Q4 2022.
In addition to improving its profit margin, Apple's Mac chips allowed the company to vastly upgrade its computers by controlling every component. The end products are faster than their predecessors, offering far better battery life and attracting more consumers. Similar treatment to its iPhones could provide a significant boost to its highest-earning segment.
Expanding in other markets
In addition to maximizing iPhone products, Apple is fortifying its business by diversifying its revenue and expanding in other areas.
The company will reportedly add a new product to its lineup and venture into augmented/virtual reality (AR/VR) with the launch of a headset later this year. According to Grand View Research, the augmented reality market was valued at $25.33 billion in 2021 and is projected to expand at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 40.9% through 2030. Meanwhile, the VR market will develop at a CAGR of 15% in the same period. Apple's potent brand could take it far in the new sector, allowing it to substantially profit from the market's growth.
Moreover, the company is home to a swiftly growing services business allowing it to lean less on its product revenue. In 2022, services such as Apple TV+, Music, and iCloud earned $78.1 billion in revenue, growing 14% year over year, double the iPhone's growth. In addition, the segment's profit margin hit 71.3%, while the same metric for products reached 36.3%.
Apple keeps a long-term mindset with its business, strengthening its cash cow by maximizing profits in its iPhone segment in the coming years while adding another layer of protection with product expansion and digital services. With a sell-off leading its stock to fall 15% from its high, now is an excellent time to consider investing in Apple.
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Suzanne Frey, an executive at Alphabet, is a member of The Motley Fool's board of directors. John Mackey, former CEO of Whole Foods Market, an Amazon subsidiary, is a member of The Motley Fool's board of directors. Dani Cook has positions in LG Display. The Motley Fool has positions in and recommends Alphabet, Amazon.com, Apple, Intel, and Qualcomm. The Motley Fool recommends Broadcom and recommends the following options: long January 2023 $57.50 calls on Intel, long January 2025 $45 calls on Intel, long March 2023 $120 calls on Apple, and short March 2023 $130 calls on Apple. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.