Concerns that the iPhone 8 and iPhone 8 Plus experienced disappointing first weekend sales are overblown, claims respected KGI Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo. In a note to investors, Kuo said that reports about the new iPhone 8 have so far been “excessively negative.”
Instead, Kuo suggests that first weekend sales for the handset were relatively stable, and that Apple is expecting a roughly even split between the iPhone X and the iPhone 8 and 8 Plus.
“We previously estimated the production weighting of new 2017 iPhone models at roughly 50% iPhone X and 50% iPhone 8/ 8 Plus,” he wrote in his note to investors. “This matches what we believe is Apple’s (U.S.) estimate for demand. At first glance, the combined first-week adoption rate for the iPhone 8/ 8 Plus might appear low (about half that of iPhone 6s/ 6s Plus and 7/ 7 Plus). However, this is due to the fact that the iPhone X is not included, not because iPhone 8/ 8 Plus first weekend sales have been weak.”
Kuo acknowledges that queues for the new iPhone 8 and 8 Plus have typically been shorter than in previous years, but points out that the kind of hardcore fans who will camp out for a new iPhone are probably disproportionately likely to splurge the extra cash to buy a top of the range iPhone X.
As we noted previously, it seems that iPhone 8 Plus sales have been stronger than those of the smaller 4.7-inch iPhone 8. That is an inversion of previous years where the smaller handset has made up a bigger percentage of early iPhones bought. (At the same time, that could simply mean that Apple has finally worked out demand for the handsets, after iPhone Plus models were in short supply in previous years.)
Overall, things bode well for Apple’s 2017 iPhone line-up. In a previous investment note, Kuo predicted that iPhone X preorders could exceed 40 million, and may even hit 50 million. If true, this would be a massive achievement for Apple, particularly given the high price of the handset, which some predicted would be a major strike against it.
Which new iPhone, if any, are you buying this year? Leave your comments below.