iPithy: Why the World's Biggest Company Speaks With the Fewest Words

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Apple lets its numbers do the talking.

America's most successful large company is also the most laconic. The average Apple earnings release clocks in at 250 words, less than a fifth the length of the average statement from one of the ten largest U.S. corporations, according to Bloomberg.

It might seem like a frivolous factoid, but it reflects a larger point: Perhaps Apple's can afford to be brief because it derives its revenue from a such a small list of products. The iPhone and iPad account for more than 75% of the company's revenue. The same cannot be said of Walmart, which sells thousands of products, or GE, which is dozens of divisions and hundreds of products under the hood of a single corporation.

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Derek Thompson is a senior editor at The Atlantic, where he writes about economics, labor markets, and the entertainment business.

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