The big picture: Apple's iconic iPhone is now being actively used by more than a billion people around the world according to one renowned analyst. If accurate or even in the ballpark, it means it took Apple a little over 13 years from the time it launched the first-gen iPhone to reach the milestone.

Neil Cybart said in a recent research note that according to his estimate, Apple surpassed the billion iPhone user mark last month.

Cybart runs Above Avalon, a company that focuses on analyzing Apple from a Silicon Valley and Wall Street perspective.

Since Apple doesn't disclose the iPhone installed base (the total number of new and used iPhones currently in use) on a quarterly basis, Cybart said, two variables are needed to gauge this figure: the number of people that buy a new iPhone from Apple or a third-party retailer and the number of folks using iPhones obtained via the grey market like those obtained from friends or family or purchased used online.

Based on Cybart's metrics, the iPhone installed base likely crossed the one billion mark in September.

For reference, Apple did reveal in FY1Q19 that its iPhone installed base had crossed 900 million devices.

The company sold its one billionth iPhone in 2016.

Looking ahead, Cybart believes there are three priorities that Apple will want to focus on to ensure the iPhone continues on its path of success: pushing camera technology boundaries, increasing the value associated with iPhone ownership and boosting the number of tasks the device is capable of accomplishing.

Masthead credit: NYC Russ