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Apple’s main problems are China and innovation


China may be Apple’s biggest problem right now, but a lack of innovation isn’t far behind, said Recode’s Kara Swisher.

“Obviously, China’s at the top of the line,” Swisher told’s “Fast Money” in a phone interview on Wednesday, after Apple cut its first-quarter revenue guidance. “One of the successes of Apple was being successful in China, and so they’re seeing the downside of a market that’s contracting there.”

In CEO Tim Cook’s letter to shareholders, Apple slashed its revenue estimate to $84 billion, down from the $89 to $93 billion it had previously projected. It also cut its gross margin expectations to about 38 percent from between 38 percent and 38.5 percent.

Cook said the problems were weakness in China and fewer upgrades than expected to new iPhone models in other countries. He told’s Josh Lipton in an interview that U.S.-China trade disputes were likely exacerbating China’s economic issues.

Apple shares sank more than 7.5 percent in after-hours trading.

But in addition to economic challenges, Apple also has to contend with issues surrounding the development of new products and services.

“The innovation cycle has slowed down at Apple,” Swisher said. “Where is their exciting new product and where are their exciting new entrepreneurs within that company?”

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