There may not be any official announcement of Apple’s iWatch entry into the wearable tech market just yet, but that’s not stopping analysts from predicting big things for it.
The latest is Morgan Stanley’s Katy Huberty, who suggests that the iWatch could achieve sales in the region of 30-60 million units in its first year on the market, thanks to the “halo effect” of brand loyalty to Apple that will drive sales of the as-yet-unannounced product.
Huberty has come up with several different scenarios to explain her prediction.
In her “base case,” the iWatch echoes the trajectory of the iPhone: selling 30 million units at $300 each in its first year. This would generate an extra $9 billion in revenue, and add about 49 cents to Apple’s bottom line.
In Huberty “bull case,” the iWatch’s adoption follows that of the iPad: with Apple selling 60 million units over the course of the year. If this happens, Huberty think Apple shares will hit $132 per share this time next year.
Finally her highly-unlikely “bear case” sees iPhone sales fall off a cliff, no mainstream interest in wearables, Apple share prices falling to $74, and presumably me looking for another job.
While Huberty has covered seemingly every outcome, she’s not the first analysts to suggest the iWatch could be a winner for Apple in line with the iPhone or iPad. Recently USB analyst Steven Milunovich suggested that the iWatch could match initial sales of the iPad: with 21 million units selling in fiscal 2015, and a further 36 million units the following year. If true, this would make it Apple’s fastest-selling new iOS product line yet.
(The iPad, by comparison, sold 19.5 million units in its first year, rising to 47.6 million in its second.)
Of course, nobody’s going to know for sure until we see a product, but the fact that analysts are talking about the iWatch in the same tones normally reserved for the ultra-succesful iPhone and iPad can only be good for Apple’s share prices.