iPhone 8 may be Apple’s worst September launch weekend in years


Fans queuing for the iPhone 8 on launch day.
Photo: S Marshall-McCormack/Twitter

The iPhone 8 and iPhone 8 Plus have seen lower adoption rates than any September launch of an iPhone since at least 2013, a new report by “lifestyle engagement platform” Localytics claims.

During its first weekend on sale, the iPhone 8 reportedly seized 0.3 percent of the total iPhone device market share, while the iPhone 8 Plus managed 0.4 percent. By contrast, last year’s iPhone 7 generation of handsets racked up 1.2 percent of the market in its opening weekend.

Apples and oranges

The comparison isn’t a totally fair one, of course. For one thing, the total iPhone market grows each year, which means that Apple has to sell more devices just to equal the same percentage. More importantly, the iPhone 8 and 8 Plus is considered a secondary iPhone line, compared to the far more eagerly anticipated iPhone X.

How iPhone launches stack up year on year.
Photo: Localytics

A more accurate comparison would therefore be with the iPhone SE, which was Apple’s last phone to be a non-flagship handset. Although the iPhone SE came out at a different time of year, rather than the now traditional September launch, it received just 0.1 percent of the market when it was released.

In addition, there’s the promising sign that the iPhone 8 Plus, despite no longer being the top of the line Apple flagship phone, seems to have outsold last year’s iPhone 7 Plus upon its release — with 0.4 percent of the market rather than 0.2. Interestingly, this would make it the first year where the 5.5-inch iPhone outsold the smaller 4.7-inch model.

This all bodes well for the new iPhone X. Whether it can replicate the 2 percent of the market that the 4.7-inch iPhone 6 picked up in 2014 remains to be seen, however.

iOS 11

Hand in hand with lower sales for the iPhone 8 and iPhone 8 Plus are the reports that iOS 11 has not yet matched the first six days of adoption for last year’s iOS 10. iOS 11 is reportedly installed on approximately 22 percent of eligible devices, compared to 26 percent of eligible devices this time last year for iOS 10.

iOS 11 adoption isn’t what last year’s was.
Photo: Localytics

At time of writing, Apple has yet to release any of its own figures concerning these metrics. In recent years, the company has shied away from releasing this information for a combination of competitive reasons (in terms of the sales breakdown for different size handsets) and not wanting to have to top its own weekend sales record every year.

Have you upgraded to iOS 11 yet? Are you the proud owner of a new iPhone 8 or 8 Plus, or are you planning on picking up the new iPhone X? Leave your comments below.

Source: Localytics

  • Ian Weir

    Samsung might be taking a bite of Apple sales as well as other smartphone manufactures. Maybe it’s time Apple consider dropping the price of their phones to compete against their rivals. Ya right, I guess I should check myself into the looney bin to have my head examined.

    • DCJ001

      So, you are saying that Apple should focus on selling more iPhones at a lower price, instead of earning more than 90% of smartphone profits with their current strategy?

    • Jose F.

      Not going to work pal… Apple already tried that with the iPhone 5C and the numbers were not so great either. To me the real issue is that they have a ton of devices compared to the times of the 4 and 5. Apple should just scrap everything and rename the brand as iPhone Mini (SE), iPhone (Regular) & iPhone Pro (X).

      I know that having a ton of options is good for the customer but Apple has to make a choice, big numbers or big market share.

  • 01nb

    Completely out of the blue, one of the guys I work with asked about upgrading his daughter’s iPhones very soon. They both have iP6, and at this point they are staring to have battery issues. So, I popped in to VZ’s website, and ordered 2 64gb iP8 for store pickup. He picked them up just a few hours later. Mind you this was on Friday aka LAUNCH DAY.

    If you waited in a line for this launch, you are either an idiot, or did it because you like the camaraderie of being in whatever line may have existed at your locale.

    And in response to @ian_weir:disqus – Samsung’s flagships are just as expensive as Apple’s. Nobody else is a “competitor” to Apple, their sales numbers do not even register on Apple’s radar.

    • 01nb

      To complete my thoughts: yes I’ve upgraded to iOS11 on my iPhone 7+ and my iPad Air2. Both run smoothly, with very few bugs (related to 3rd party apps only). I used the Public Beta on the IPA2 since the 3rd release. It has been mostly smooth, getting better with each incremental update. It now is solid as can be. Love the dock, still getting used to some of the multitasking features. Have been extremely pleased with the new control center on both. Time will tell on the “unused apps” and other fringe features.

  • Hein S

    Obviously, people are waiting for the X.