On a trip to Greater China on Thursday, Apple CEO Tim Cook said “it’s just a matter of time” before China “become[s] Apple’s biggest revenue contributor.”
Cook’s public remarks were transcribed by Sina Corporation, a Chinese media outlet.
Cook noted that Chinese customers have been slower to adopt the company’s most popular products, including the iPhone and iPad, but Apple’s chief financial officer Luca Maestri said earlier this month that demand in the country has “been really off the charts.”
Apple did not release the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus in China until Oct. 17. But Greater China, which includes Taiwan and Hong Kong, contributed $US5.8 billion to Apple’s revenue (roughly 14%) in the most recent quarter.
During his Thursday visit, Cook stopped by one of Foxconn’s plants in northern central China, and he also met with the Chinese vice premier Ma Kai to discuss how it plans to boost security around user data.
The first Apple Store didn’t arrive in China until 2008, but Cook said the company plans to open another 25 retail stores in the next two years.
This isn’t the first time Cook has said this. In January of 2013, he said China will eventually beat out the US to be Apple’s largest market.