Best Buy & Walmart Black Friday ads bring the year’s best Apple deals

From 9to5Toys.com:

Yesterday it was Target. Today the Best Buy and Walmart Black Friday / Thanksgiving deal advertisements are now official. Both ads feature heavy discounting on iPads, iTunes cards, iPods, Macs, and more. The most impressive deals at Walmart include an iPad mini for $299 with a free $100 gift card, and free gift card offers with the purchase of an iPhone 5c/5c. Best Buy offers up to $200 off a new Mac laptop, 15% off iTunes cards, and an Apple TV for $85.

While we haven’t seen Apple’s Black Friday deals for this year, it’s pretty safe to assume they won’t stray too far from the ‘education pricing for all’ strategy implemented at preceding Black Friday promotions.

Head over to 9to5toys for complete coverage of these ads and all others that have leaked thus far as well as best deals as they happen. Read more

Apple’s market share in Japan overtakes USA, with more to come

Apple Inc Starts To Sell New iPhone 5S And iPhone 5C

Photo: japantimes.co.jp

Apple’s share of the smartphone market in Japan has hit 37 percent, greater than the 36 percent share in the USA, reports the WSJ.

Sales got another boost in late September when NTT DoCoMo Inc., Japan’s largest wireless carrier, began offering the iPhone for the first time to its 61.8 million customers. Even before that, the iPhone was Japan’s best-selling smartphone, with a 37% market share in the six months ended Sept. 30, according to Tokyo’s MM Research Institute. That’s comparable to the iPhone’s 36% share in the U.S. in the third quarter, according to Kantar Worldpanel ComTech …  Read more

Boost Mobile starts selling the iPhone 5s and 5c today for $200 off for new customers, starting at $349 unsubsidized

From 9to5Toys.com:

Boost-mobile-iphone-sale

As we’ve noted on a few occasions, Sprint pre-paid subsidiaryBoost Mobile is now carrying the iPhone for the first time in its history. Launching today, the iPhone 5s and 5c are $100 off of Apple’s retail price if ordered online. However, Boost is running a special promotion until November 24th where you get an additional $100 off if you switch in store from another carrier. I confirmed the deal with a PR rep who said:

Yes. Now through Nov. 24 new customers who come into a participating Boost Mobile store and switch to Boost Mobile from another carrier will be eligible for a special in-store promotion of $100 off any device bringing new customers  additional cost savings.  The link below will help consumers find participating stores in their area that are selling iPhone.

Boost Mobile plans start at $55/month but drop significantly as you make payments on time. Find the nearest Boost Mobile here. Read more

Apple Stores to soon offer iPhone 5s & 5c screen replacements, other repairs

iPhone 5s Teardown via iFixit

iPhone 5s Teardown via iFixit

Apple is gearing up to soon begin hardware repairs for the iPhone 5s and iPhone 5c in its chain of retail stores, according to sources with knowledge of the upcoming initiative. These sources say that Apple Stores will be able to replace several parts of the iPhone 5s and iPhone 5c on-site, meaning that Apple will no-longer need to fully replace iPhone 5s and iPhone 5c units with damage or other problems…

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Ten days of iPhone 5s and 5c sales help Apple break 40 percent in U.S. smartphone market

comscore2

Apple’s share of the U.S. smartphone market grew by 0.7 percent in the last quarter to reach 40.6 percent, according to comScore data.

Sales of low-cost handsets mean that Android’s position as leading mobile platform is safe, with a marginal drop to 51.8 percent of the market, but Apple remained top of the vendor rankings …

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Over half analysts surveyed expect AAPL to beat its own high-end guidance today

analysts

Update: The analysts were right to be optimistic, but not optimistic enough

As we wait for Apple to announce its Q4 results in this afternoon’s earnings call, more than half of the analysts included in Fortune’s survey expect the company to beat its high-end guidance of $37B. The average is driven up by the amateurs, who come in at $37.38B, while the professionals expect just a touch under the top end at $36.95B.

Predictions on both revenues and earnings do vary markedly, however. While the consensus view is that year-on-year revenues will be up 3 percent and earnings down 6 percent, even among the professionals the earnings estimates span a 15 percent range.

Top: FBN’s Shelby Seyrafi: $39.18 billion (up 9% year over year)
Bottom: Cantor Fitzgerald’s Brian White: $34.57 billion (down 4%)

Apple beating its own guidance wouldn’t have been remarkable in the days when Apple gave absurdly pessimistic guidance and then blew it away, but would be impressive since Cook started offering realistic ranges …  Read more

Boost Mobile to Offer iPhone 5s and iPhone 5c on November 8

Along with US Cellular who announced on Friday, Boost Mobile will now also offer the iPhone 5s and 5c on November 8th according to short press release this morning (below).

Boost is a Sprint Co. pre-paid sister site of Virgin, which also announced iPhone 5s and 5c availability last month with $100 off retail pricing and $30/month plans. Boost Mobile iPhone media (above) was leaked last month.

Nine other regional carriers have announced iPhone 5s/5c availability on November 1st.  Read more

Why iPhone longevity means iOS carrier activation share doesn’t resemble sales

2012-iphone4s-gallery2-zoom

There was a lot of confusion yesterday when Verizon’s results were discussed, with more than one commentator confusing activations and sales. For the record, what Verizon announced was that 51 percent of its activations were iPhone, not 51 percent of its phone sales.

If you doubt the importance of this distinction, I have one word for you: T-Mobile. As of 11th April, the carrier had two million iPhone activations. Its iPhone sales as of the same date? Zero: T-Mobile didn’t start selling iPhones until the following day.

The difference between the two numbers is particularly dramatic with high-end handsets like the iPhone …  Read more

Twice as many people buying iPhone 5s as iPhone 5c (latest claim)

cirp

With no word from Apple on the breakdown of its record-breaking iPhone sales between 5s and 5c (and no word expected during the company’s earnings call either), everyone is posting their estimates.

First to the punch was Localytics, who used iPhone connections to mobile and web apps to come up with an estimate of three to one in favor of the 5s. KGI’s Mingchi Kuo disagreed, using supply chain analysis to put the figures closer to 50/50, and suggesting that, if anything, sales of the 5c might be slightly higher. Now we have Consumer Intelligence Research Partners (via AllThingsD) using consumer surveys to suggest that the 5s is outselling the 5c two-to-one …  Read more

iPhone app turns your iPhone 5c (and case) into ‘Connect Four’ board

Ever since the iPhone 5c launched along with a specially-designed case, people have compared the case’s design to a the game Connect Four. Now a new app has arrived on the App Store that takes that observation and turns it into a real game. The app is called Flipcase, and the idea is pretty simple: you put your iPhone 5c case on backwards, so that the holes on the back are on top of the screen, and then take turns tapping the columns to try to connect four colored dots.

The app’s description says it’s compatible with other iPhone models, including the iPhone 5 and 5s, though it’s designed specifically with the 5c in mind. Flipcase is available for free on the App Store.

… And another cool use for the 5c case:

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Are iPhone 5c sales low or supplies high?

Image: abcnews.com

Image: abcnews.com

KGI’s Mingchi Kuo, an analyst with a solid track-record, and the man who came closest (almost) to calling opening weekend sales of the iPhone, now believes Apple shipped ‘just’ 11.4M iPhone 5c handsets in September, rather than the 17M he had earlier forecast, reports Business Insider.

Kuo is now estimating Apple shipped 11.4 million 5Cs in the September quarter, a 33% drop from his original estimate. He also says he expects 5C sales to be just 10.4 million units for the December quarter, a 10% sequential drop.

This makes some sense of the rampant discounting seen on the 5C (which actually started at Walmart before launch), but doesn’t necessarily mean that iPhone sales as a whole are down …  Read more

Apple TD-LTE job listing serves as additional confirmation for China Mobile iPhone

China Mobile cell tower

While a possible deal with China Mobile, one of the world’s largest telecoms, was rumored for quite sometime leading up to launch of the new iPhones, the company said in August that it was still working out “commercial and technical issues” with Apple. Today, Bloomberg points us to an Apple job listing in China that provides some evidence that the company is indeed preparing to launch the iPhone on the carrier’s network:

The manager, who will be based in Beijing, will “support and drive the carrier approval of mobile phones,” Apple said in an advertisement on its China website. The position seeks experience with TD-SCDMA, China Mobile’s own third-generation standard that isn’t used by other carriers.

On top of TD-SCDMA, the job listing is also seeking an engineer with experience in TD-LTE, which is the LTE standard that China Mobile has quickly been rolling out. Back in August the often reliable KGI analyst Mingchi Kuo claimed that Apple was ramping up TD-LTE supported iPhone 5c production and estimated that the iPhone 5s and 5c on China Mobile could account for penetration of 25% and 35% of total shipments for the two devices. Currently the carrier has approximately 756 million subscribers, around 63% of the 1.2 billion wireless subscribers in China. Read more