Don’t blame Apple for the US smartphone market, blame the US carriers

Write this down, because I’m going to tell you my secret to understanding the US mobile industry for the last 20 years. The answer to everything is ‘The Carriers.’ Every question, every conundrum. If you want to know why we DO have this, or DON’T have that? The answer is the US carriers: AT&T, Verizon, and T-Mobile. How has Apple managed to achieve monopoly power in the US and draw the ire of the Justice Department? The answer is the US carriers.

(Image credit: Future / Philip Berne)

One of the strongest points that Apple makes in its rebuttal to the government’s lawsuit is that the government is considering only the US market, but Apple competes on a global scale. In the global market, Apple’s market share is much lower than in the US alone. It owns closer to 20% of the global market, as opposed to more than 60% of the US market.