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Gartner: Apple's 'stellar' 13.5M iPhone sales held back by supply issues

post #1 of 34
Thread Starter 
Though Apple's iPhone sales were "stellar" in the third quarter of 2010, Apple could have exceeded the record 13.5 million units it sold if more supply were available, research firm Gartner said Wednesday.

The company revealed its quarterly sales estimates two weeks after competitor IDC revealed that Apple had passed competitor Research in Motion to become the No. 4 global mobile phone company. Gartner's numbers also show Apple at No. 4 with a 3.2 percent market share, ahead of RIM but behind LG, Samsung and Nokia.

Gartner also added that sales in Europe, Asia and Japan more than doubled from the third quarter of 2009, while iPhone sales put Apple in third place among vendors in Western Europe.

"Apple delivered a stellar performance in the third quarter of 2010, selling 13.5 million units," the firm said. "It could have sold more but for its ongoing supply constraints and is now in fourth place worldwide."

After strong initial demand for the iPhone led to limited supply, Apple has gradually improved shipping times for the iPhone 4. Apple's latest handset now ships within 24 hours when purchased direct from the company online.

In terms of smartphone-only sales, Gartner found that Apple's iOS was the third most popular mobile platform in the third quarter, behind Symbian and Android. Apple's sales of 13.5 million units represented a 16.7 percent market share.



Though Apple's total unit sales nearly doubled year over year, from 7 million in the third quarter of 2009, the explosive growth of Google's Android mobile operating system resulted in a lost market share for Apple. A year ago, iOS represented 17.1 percent of smartphones sold worldwide.

The total number of Android handsets sold in the third quarter of 2010 was 20.5 million, good for a 25.5 percent share. That was still less than the number of phones sold running Nokia's Symbian platform, which accounted for 27.4 million units and 36.6 percent of the global market.

In North America, Apple surpassed RIM last quarter to become the No. 2 smartphone platform behind Android.

"Apple's dramatic expansion of iOS with the iPad and the continuing success of the iPod Touch are important sales achievements in their own right," said Carolina Milanesi, research vice president at Gartner. "But more importantly they contribute to the strength of Apple's ecosystem and the iPhone in a way that smartphone-only manufacturers cannot compete with.

"To a developer, the iPod Touch and iPhone (and to a lesser extent the iPad) are effectively the same device and a single market opportunity. While Android is increasingly available on media tablets and media players like the Galaxy Player, it lags far behind iOS's multi-device presence. Apple claims it is activating around 275,000 iOS devices per day on average that's a compelling market for any developer. And developers' applications in turn attract users.

The news that Apple had passed RIM was broken by Apple Chief Executive Steve Jobs during his company's quarterly conference call in October. Jobs asserted that it would be a "challenge" for RIM to "create a mobile software platform and convince developers to support a third platform."

Gartner believes that media tablets, and largely Apple's iPad, will sell 54.8 million total units in 2011. Last week, the firm advised company CEOs to get involved and ensure the iPad is given IT approval for use at their company, or they risk being left behind in the competitive landscape.
post #2 of 34
This is the third quarter. what about the fourth, or are they talking about calendar? If so, as I expect they are, I thought Apple announced they had sold 14.1 million phones, not 13.5.
post #3 of 34
Analyst says Apple could have sold more phones if they'd had more to sell.

And these people get paid for stating the obvious do they?
post #4 of 34
Quote:
Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post

Though Apple's iPhone sales were "stellar" in the third quarter of 2010, Apple could have exceeded the record 13.5 million units it sold if more supply were available, research firm Gartner said Wednesday.



Yet another example of execution errors. Isn't that Tim Cook's job?
post #5 of 34
Everyone who wants an iPhone 4 will eventually get one, even if they have to wait a few weeks for their order, so the product lifecycle sales will always be the same unless supply problems become extremely bad.

Although I love the iPhone 4, the competition is catching up and Apple need to listen to what it's customers want for the iPhone 5.

For me, there are a few frustrations with the product, for example;
1. There are actually two volumes to control, the ringer and system volume but sometimes you need to run an app or itunes to adjust the system volume, otherwise you'd just adjust the ringer. [My alarm failed to ring a few weeks ago, not because of the Daylight savings bug, but because the system volume was at minimum.
There needs to be an easy way of adjusting each voume.
2. Orientation lock - yes you can lock it in Portrait, but what when I want it locked in landscape?
3. Screen brightness - It would be good to have an easy way of adjusting screen brightness. My preference would be to have a + and - button on the other side of the device, maybe with a hardware orientation lock (mirroring the look on both sides). However, Apple doesn't like buttons so another solution is needed.
4. Easier way of switching Bluetooth on and off. Leaving it on drains the battery but if I'm going in and out of the car a lot, it can be a pain.
5. The antenna problems need a better fix than having a case on the device.
6. The camera still needs a little bit more work. I had hoped it would match that of the Nokia N95 8GB the phone replaced but I actually find it a bit soft, difficult to get correct colour & white balance as well as a weak flash (Xenon flash would be ideal).
7. Over the air upgrades needed - There are many users who would love just to have an iPhone and iPad without any desktop / laptop device.
8. Better multi-tasking - I don't see any reason why background apps cannot run, albeit with reduced clock cycles (processing power) assigned to then. Yes, there may be a hit on battery life but it would improve overall functionality.
9. Needs to support all carriers and network technology, including emerging 4G standards.
10. better durability. Although the glass is quite scratchproof, there are too many stories of either scratches or breakages of the glass.

And of course, further development of iOS 4.x / 5.x

Phil
post #6 of 34
Quote:
Originally Posted by Steve-J View Post

Yet another example of execution errors. Isn't that Tim Cook's job?

Apparently Apple just can't seem to do anything right according to you Mr. Obvious. They have $50b in the bank, outselling pretty-much everyone in the market, can't make their products fast-enough, have the highest customer-service satisfaction rating of anyone and yet by your accounts, they seem to suffer fumbles of management.

What's taking so long for you to submit your resume to Steve Jobs? I'm sure he could use someone with your keen insight.
post #7 of 34
According to the list that is pretty impressive in unit sales for BB OS, Symbian, and of course Android-based devices. I wonder if Android will best Symbian within the year or if they are plateauing.


PS: sfocal, youre falling victim to the Great Pit of FUD. Do you really want this Sarlacc to hijack and digest this thread for a 1000 years?
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post #8 of 34
Quote:
Originally Posted by melgross View Post

This is the third quarter. what about the fourth, or are they talking about calendar? If so, as I expect they are, I thought Apple announced they had sold 14.1 million phones, not 13.5.

I think Gartner counts "sold" vs "shipped".

The missing 600k iPhones will turn up in the next quarter.
post #9 of 34
Quote:
Originally Posted by womble2k2 View Post

Although I love the iPhone 4, the competition is catching up and Apple need to listen to what it's customers want for the iPhone 5.



Indeed.


post #10 of 34
Quote:
Originally Posted by sflocal View Post

Apparently Apple just can't seem to do anything right

"Nope"
post #11 of 34
Wasn't it 14.1 million?
post #12 of 34
Quote:
Originally Posted by solipsism View Post

According to the list that is pretty impressive in unit sales for BB OS, Symbian, .....

Units, yes. Growth not so much.
post #13 of 34
As a dev, I would like to know how many iPod Touches were sold, to get a real understanding of the software platforms. I would assume its at least a few million.
post #14 of 34
Quote:
Originally Posted by Steve-J View Post

Indeed.



Google is flooding the market. That's what, 40+ Android handsets?

Apple just surpassed RIM with ONE (at most two) phones locked to a single carrier in the US - the US being the largest smartphone market.

How's THAT for perspective?

There currently exists no single "iPhone-Killer." Simply because the competition doesn't know how to make one.
post #15 of 34
Quote:
Originally Posted by womble2k2 View Post

Everyone who wants an iPhone 4 will eventually get one, even if they have to wait a few weeks for their order, so the product lifecycle sales will always be the same unless supply problems become extremely bad.

Although I love the iPhone 4, the competition is catching up and Apple need to listen to what it's customers want for the iPhone 5.

For me, there are a few frustrations with the product, for example;
1. There are actually two volumes to control, the ringer and system volume but sometimes you need to run an app or itunes to adjust the system volume, otherwise you'd just adjust the ringer. [My alarm failed to ring a few weeks ago, not because of the Daylight savings bug, but because the system volume was at minimum.
There needs to be an easy way of adjusting each voume.
2. Orientation lock - yes you can lock it in Portrait, but what when I want it locked in landscape?
3. Screen brightness - It would be good to have an easy way of adjusting screen brightness. My preference would be to have a + and - button on the other side of the device, maybe with a hardware orientation lock (mirroring the look on both sides). However, Apple doesn't like buttons so another solution is needed.
4. Easier way of switching Bluetooth on and off. Leaving it on drains the battery but if I'm going in and out of the car a lot, it can be a pain.
5. The antenna problems need a better fix than having a case on the device.
6. The camera still needs a little bit more work. I had hoped it would match that of the Nokia N95 8GB the phone replaced but I actually find it a bit soft, difficult to get correct colour & white balance as well as a weak flash (Xenon flash would be ideal).
7. Over the air upgrades needed - There are many users who would love just to have an iPhone and iPad without any desktop / laptop device.
8. Better multi-tasking - I don't see any reason why background apps cannot run, albeit with reduced clock cycles (processing power) assigned to then. Yes, there may be a hit on battery life but it would improve overall functionality.
9. Needs to support all carriers and network technology, including emerging 4G standards.
10. better durability. Although the glass is quite scratchproof, there are too many stories of either scratches or breakages of the glass.

And of course, further development of iOS 4.x / 5.x

Phil

Most of these issues could be fixed with software. The antenna gap can be changed to location less likely to be touched. Still, I have not had a problem and I have tried to get calls drop by touching the gap, but it never happened.

A smartphone needs some kind of case... too expensive and delicate. I like the bumper and it has worked well.

The iPhone is not for everybody. I like its simple design and interface. Not too many buttons. Don't have to read a manual. For people who want to tweak, there is the Android, Windows. Got lot of buttons, bells and whistles... and most got to read the manual. Another advantage is the software... once I buy, I can use it in the iPhone, iPod, iTouch, etc.
post #16 of 34
Quote:
Originally Posted by Steve-J View Post

Yet another example of execution errors. Isn't that Tim Cook's job?

a lot of people held back waiting for the mythical white iphone that SJ hyped
post #17 of 34
Quote:
Originally Posted by piot View Post

Units, yes. Growth not so much.

According to the chart, the market nearly doubled for smartphones in the period under study.

Apple's sales nearly doubled too - they kept up with the market, losing a few tenths of a percent.

But RIM's sales didn't double. Nor did Nokia's smartphone sales. They are fading.



A couple of other things caught my attention, and I'm wondering if anybody might hazard some guesses?

That "Other" category, holding steady at 1.5%. Is that WebOS? Hanging in there? Sad but feisty?

And the significant number of new Linux powered phones: What phones are those? Who is buying them? Where?

Anybody know?
post #18 of 34
Not surprised at all. My wife's still on 2 weeks waiting list, hoping to get it before the end of the month.
post #19 of 34
So is Apple doomed or not?
post #20 of 34
Quote:
Originally Posted by nkhm View Post

Analyst says Apple could have sold more phones if they'd had more to sell.

And these people get paid for stating the obvious do they?

It's hardly obvious. It is entirely possible for a company to make more product than they can sell, as it's certainly not a given that demand is going to outstrip supply.
Please don't be insane.
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Please don't be insane.
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post #21 of 34
Quote:
Originally Posted by piot View Post

Units, yes. Growth not so much.

All the companies I mentioned had good YoY growth of unit sales. Only the free Android OS for the multitude of failing smartphone vendors had growth in their unit marketshare YoY. Even Apple dropped YoY in unit marketshare in their first full quarter for iPhone 4 sales despite still trouncing the entire markets profits compared to any vendor. I think RiM still did record sales, too, despite their drop in unit marketshare, but thats how markets usually work out, with the leading companies on top with the lackeys at the bottom struggling for profits with cheap devices.
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post #22 of 34
Quote:
Originally Posted by Steve-J View Post

According to the chart, the market nearly doubled for smartphones in the period under study.

Apple's sales nearly doubled too - they kept up with the market, losing a few tenths of a percent.

But RIM's sales didn't double. Nor did Nokia's smartphone sales. They are fading.

Yep, just like I said!
post #23 of 34
Hey Steve, is Google still faking those activation numbers or what?
post #24 of 34
I agree , I work for hong kong iPhone suppler for china grey market , in hong kong , iPhone sale may be over 40000 iPhones per day in hk if apple gives us enough . Foxconn can make about 140k iPhones per day. But now hk apple online store and china online store have stopped taking iPhone orders due to crazy demands.
post #25 of 34
Quote:
Originally Posted by lkrupp View Post

So is Apple doomed or not?

Yes.
post #26 of 34
Quote:
Originally Posted by solipsism View Post

All the companies I mentioned had good YoY growth of unit sales.

Yes Sol, but growth is relative.

Symbian's growth of 61% is pretty good. But compared to the rest of the market (124% !) it loses a little of it's shine.

RIM's growth of 40% looks pretty good also . But compared to the rest of the market (111% !) it appears to be pretty poor.

That's all I'm sayin'.

The bottom line is that this HAS been the year of Android! However Apple's iPhone has not been a loser. All the major analysts have iPhone's market share UP for the 9 months of 2010. iPhone sales will have to drop down the toilet in order to avoid GAINING share in 2010. The biggest losers will be Microsoft, RIM and Nokia (Symbian).
post #27 of 34
Quote:
Originally Posted by piot View Post

The biggest losers will be Microsoft, RIM and Nokia (Symbian).

it's really doubtful that wp7 will continue to hemorrhage share like WinMo6 did. I would expect WP7 share to come at the expense of Android.
post #28 of 34
Quote:
Originally Posted by Steve-J View Post

There currently exists no single "iPhone-Killer." Simply because the competition doesn't know how to make one.

You need to watch more National Geographic. Haven't you ever seen the video where a pack of jackyls takes down a huge ox? Or a nest of ants kills a rodent? Or perhaps you've heard stories about swarms of bees killing people.

There doesn't have to be a single phone that takes on the iPhone. It's iOS vs Android, not iPhone vs any one other phone.
post #29 of 34
Quote:
Originally Posted by Quadra 610 View Post

Wasn't it 14.1 million?

iPhone channel inventory went up by 825,000 units.
post #30 of 34
Quote:
Originally Posted by solipsism View Post

All the companies I mentioned had good YoY growth of unit sales.

They were unable to even keep up with the overall market or the average-performing players. If that is " good YoY growth of unit sales", then I am unsure of why that is the case.

ISTM that the performance was less than mediocre. Mediocre would have been if they had barely kept up with the market average, like Apple. But their growth was not even mediocre, much less good.

I won't choose a word to describe it.
post #31 of 34
Quote:
Originally Posted by Wiggin View Post

You need to watch more National Geographic. Haven't you ever seen the video where a pack of jackyls takes down a huge ox? Or a nest of ants kills a rodent? Or perhaps you've heard stories about swarms of bees killing people.

There doesn't have to be a single phone that takes on the iPhone. It's iOS vs Android, not iPhone vs any one other phone.

Please delete the part attributed to me. I did not make those statements. Why did you jigger the quotes?
post #32 of 34
Quote:
Originally Posted by Steve-J View Post

Yet another example of execution errors. Isn't that Tim Cook's job?

I thought you'd be more happy that clearly globally Android kicked Apple's ass. At least in terms of units sold. I wonder how many of those Android phones run Flash smoothly though. (that was a reverse-troll manoeuvre)
post #33 of 34
Quote:
Originally Posted by ifail View Post

Hey Steve, is Google still faking those activation numbers or what?

Steve will have to reconsider his next statements. But once you include iOS numbers, they come close to Android, though there are Android tablets not shown in this report.

We'll see what Steve says next. Should be interesting.
post #34 of 34
Quote:
Originally Posted by Quadra 610 View Post

Apple just surpassed RIM with ONE (at most two) phones locked to a single carrier in the US - the US being the largest smartphone market.

In NZ Apple sells three iPhone models.
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