Apple Expects to Sustain iPhone Sales in 2022 as Market Slows

Apple Inc. has asked suppliers to build at least as many of its next-generation iPhones this year as in 2021, counting on an affluent clientele and dwindling competition to weather a global electronics downturn.

The tech giant is telling its assemblers to make 90 million of its newest devices, on par with last year, despite deteriorating projections for the smartphone market, according to people with knowledge of the matter. The Cupertino, California-based company still expects to assemble roughly 220 million iPhones in total for 2022, also about level with last year, according to one of the people.

Apple’s projections, a closely guarded secret, suggest it’s confident about weathering a slump in spending on smartphones and other devices. Mobile device makers have begun freezing orders, China’s largest chipmaker warned on Friday. The global handset market, which slid 9% in the June quarter, is expected to shrink 3.5% in 2022, IDC has forecast.