Apple today has informed employees of significant changes to how iPhones are sold via AT&T and Verizon Wireless, according to sources. As we reported last month, Apple has indicated that iPhones sold via AT&T at both physical Apple Retail Stores and on the Apple Online Store will move exclusively to Next financing plans this month, in June. This means that a customer who wants to buy a new iPhone on AT&T will no longer be able to do so on a subsidy…
For the month of June, Apple is giving a small boost to its trade-in price values for the iPhone 4S, iPhone 5, and iPhone 5S, according to Apple Store sources. Using the Reuse and Recycle program, a customer can bring in an older iPhone model and receive gift card credit toward the purchase of a newer iPhone. Likely in order to spur some new iPhone sales this month, Apple is offering the following improvements to its trade-in pricing:
UBS has matched the upbeat iPhone forecast made last month by KGI for Q2 (Apple’s fiscal Q3), both analysts estimating sales of 51M – well above the consensus expectation of 45M.
KGI’s Ming-Chi Kuo predicts 51.4M, saying that while he believes iPhone sales have peaked, demand will remain higher than the normal seasonal pattern. UBS forecast 51.1M, noting that Apple’s “continued surge” in China is a key factor, where the premium market remains strong despite reports of the country approaching saturation point in smartphones.
Apple has further increased its lead as the top smartphone manufacturer in the US, the iPhone increasing its market share by one point from 41.6% in Dec 2014 to 42.6% in March 2015, according to comScore. There was no change in the rankings, with Samsung in second place at 28.3% – a fall of 1.4% – followed by LG, Motorola and HTC.
comScore also reported the top 15 smartphone apps … Read more
Apple […] sold more iPhones in China than the United States for the first time […] increasing its revenue in the country 71 percent to $16.8 billion, although that was helped by gift-buying for Chinese New Year.
Tim Cook said that the iPhone was responsible for the bulk of Apple’s revenue in China, though he did also note that Mac sales were “unbelievable,” up 31% year-on-year. As with other markets, the iPhone is usually the first Apple product people buy, but that brings them into the ecosystem and boosts sales of other products … Read more
Tim Cook said in October that it was “just a matter of time” before China overtook the USA as its biggest market, and it seems that time may be arriving sooner than expected – at least as far as the iPhone is concerned. The Financial Times reports that analysts expect tomorrow’s Q1 earnings call to confirm that Apple sold more iPhones in China than in the US.
Analysts at UBS estimate that China accounted for 36 per cent of iPhone shipments in the most recent quarter, compared with 24 per cent for the US. During the same period last year, 29 per cent of units were sold in the US and 22 per cent were in China, UBS said.
The view was supported by Creative Strategies, which forecast that Apple has sold around 2M more iPhones in China than in the US in the final calendar quarter of 2014 (Apple’s financial Q1) … Read more
The Wall Street Journal reports that Apple is in early talks with “Iranian distributors” to bring the iPhone to Iran:
Apple Inc. is in preliminary contact with Iranian distributors about a possible entry into the country should Western sanctions ease sufficiently, people familiar with the matter said.
The report notes that financial and banking sanctions as well as political tension has thus far prevented companies like Apple from conducting business in Iran, but points to a policy change in May that lifted the ban on sales of “consumer communications technologies” in the country. The report goes on the claim that “senior Apple executives” have already met with “potential Iranian distributors” at Apple’s regional headquarters in London. Read more
I’ve got the collected fiscal Q4 estimates of 33 Apple analysts — 21 professionals and 12 amateurs. They are all to a man (and one woman) predicting record Q4 sales and earnings (up 7.1% and 11.9%, respectively).
The analysts also expect earnings per share to be up 12% year-on-year, to $1.32 … Read more
Early overnight reports collated by Fortune unsurprisingly show analysts pleased by the higher-than-expected iPhone numbers, with five out of five rating the stock a buy, their price targets ranging from $75 to $252 above yesterday’s closing value. Apple reported iPhone sales of 43.7B against expectations of 38B, and revenue of $45.6B against the consensus estimate of $43.5B.
Katy Huberty, Morgen Stanley: Price target $630
Gene Munster, Piper Jaffray: Price target $640
Brian Marshall, ISI: Price target $600
Brian White, Cantor Fitzgerald: Price target $777
Peter Misek, Jefferies: Price target $625 …
How much did your iPhone cost? If you said $199, $299 or even $399 you’re somewhere near $350 off. As some consciously forget, the carriers often shield the owner from the real total cost of the iPhone. That may not last.
iPhone sales could be hurt as carriers switch from so-called subsidized contracts, where customers pay only a fraction of the cost a new iPhone up-front, to deals where the true cost of the phone is more visible, argues a piece in the WSJ.
Many U.S. iPhone customers are not aware that the full cost of an iPhone ranges from $549 for a 16GB 5c to $849 for a 64GB 5s. The reason is that carriers have traditionally asked for only $0 to $200 up-front, hiding the balance of the cost in the monthly tariff. With carriers now switching to separate instalment costs for the phone, and the cost of upgrading every year or two more visible to consumers, analysts believe some will choose to upgrade less often …
Fortune has its usual roundup of what the analysts are expecting Apple to report in iPhone sales next week, and the forecasts make worrying reading. The overall average is for quarterly sales of 38.2 million, which would represent year-on-year growth of just two percent.
Adding to the concern, ten of the 32 analysts included in Fortune‘s poll predict a fall in sales when compared to the same quarter last year.
With the new iPhones having generated record sales in their opening weekend, and Apple having reported all-time quarterly high iPhone sales in Q1, the question is why the pessimism regarding Q2 … ? Read more
Predictions of disappointing Q2 iPhone sales could be unduly pessimistic, says Morgan Stanley’s Katy Huberty. She expects Apple to announce that it shipped 42M iPhones in the first quarter of the year (Apple’s fiscal Q2), rather than the 38M suggested by supply chain analysis, reports Business Insider. This would represent year-on-year growth of more than 4.5M handsets.
Huberty says that the supply chain may work in overdrive during the holiday quarter to generate extra product, and then ease back in the March quarter, thus giving an unreliable read out on sales.
Huberty bases her estimate on a method which sounds eccentric but has an excellent track-record … Read more