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Apple supplier says next-gen iPhone orders arriving 'several months later than usual'

post #1 of 17
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An iPhone manufacturing equipment supplier has reportedly indicated that Apple's orders for new equipment are "several months later than usual," implying a September launch of the fifth-generation iPhone.

Gene Munster with Piper Jaffray on Friday joined the growing chorus of reports that have indicated Apple will launch its next-generation iPhone later than usual this year. He agrees with previous predictions that the fifth-generation handset will go on sale in September, and his financial models for AAPL stock reflect that timetable.

Munster noted that on average there are 79 days between Apple's iOS software event and the iPhone hardware announcement. There have also been an average of 99 days between the software event and the actual ship date of the new iPhone.

Under the assumption that Apple would introduce new iPhone software, likely iOS 5, at its annual Worldwide Developers Conference, beginning June 6 in San Francisco, the historical averages point to an announcement of the fifth-generation iPhone on Aug. 24, and a shipping date of Sept. 13.

Munster believes that a September quarter launch is "normal" for new iPhone hardware, because the impact of iPhone launches is typically not seen until the September quarter. While the iPhone 3G was released in July, placing it in the September quarter, the original iPhone, iPhone 3GS and iPhone 4 all came toward the end of the June quarter, placing a large number of "launch" sales actually in the following three-month frame.

Apple's chief interests with its anticipated fifth-generation iPhone are believed to be the iOS software that will run on it, and possibly a larger 4-inch display that serves as a "window into the software," Munster said.



He believes a 4-inch display will come to the iPhone by 2012 at the latest, but added that he sees a larger screen as "more likely a 2011 feature." Rumors of a larger screen on the next iPhone, including alleged engineering sketches and prototype hardware, have persisted for months.

As for support for 4G long-term evolution high-speed data connections, Munster sees that functionality as more likely to arrive with an anticipated sixth-generation iPhone in 2012. That would also align with the latest rumors of an LTE-capable iPhone.

As for the reasons for a later-than-usual iPhone launch, Munster said one reason may be that Apple has software-driven features planned for the next handset that are "not yet fully-baked."

He also said supply issues related to the Japan earthquake and tsunami could have had an impact. In addition, the decision whether to support LTE data or not could have delayed the development process.

Piper Jaffray has forecast sales of 16 million iPhones in the June quarter and 21 million iPhones in the September quarter. Munster said even a later-than-usual launch of the next iPhone would not place his numbers "at risk."
post #2 of 17
I suppose that makes some sort of sense - iPhone 5 = world phone - single hardware for everyone - or just everyone outside the US?

I can wait till Q3 2012 for my iPhone 6 LTE.
post #3 of 17
Quote:
Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post

A... As for the reasons for a later-than-usual iPhone launch, Munster said one reason may be that Apple has software-driven features planned for the next handset that are "not yet fully-baked."... He also said supply issues related to the Japan earthquake and tsunami could have had an impact. In addition, the decision whether to support LTE data or not could have delayed the development process. ...

Isn't it more likely that the reason for the delay is the same reason that everyone was quoting when speculating about the iPad 3 arriving in September?

iPods are rapidly shrinking in popularity and sales as a stand alone product. If they didn't move the iPhone (or something) to the September launch period they might end up with nothing to sell but an iPod touch. Having the iPhone and it's closest sibling for sale at opposite ends of the year makes no sense at all.

Thus, move the iPhone to the September event to be released at the same time as it's sister product.
post #4 of 17
Gene Munster is among the worst analysts out there, so don't take any of this seriously. The pundit choir bemoans the tight information control Aplenty has on supply chains and manufacturing and now this puffball opines...
Look at his last AAPL earnings forecast in comparison to bloggers: pathetic.



cheers
post #5 of 17
I don't think the decision to wait until September/October for the iPhone has anything to do with the iPod, and I'm not sure why some people are determined to chain these two devices together. Yes, they share alot of components and capabilities, but they are not companion devices. I can think of no good reason for someone to own both an iPod Touch and an iPhone.

However, if there is a small contingent of people who own both, then that's fine I suppose, but I do not believe for a second that Apple feels compelled to release these two products together. I think it is just coincidental for this year. Maybe there is a delay related to design changes and testing. Or maybe Apple is just in the early stages of changing the release cycle so that thay have a single phone for all carriers, and updated hardware can be released simultaneously for all. Since the Verizon model came out in February, the cycle is off balance, so I think they are in the process of rectifying this.
post #6 of 17
I think Apple will not release a new iPhone next month, simply because there's not much to release. The iPhone 4 hardware is still very up to date.

The 1GHz A4 with 512MB Ram is still very capable. The Retina display is up there with everything else in the market, the camera as well is still top-notch...

You could argue about the improved graphics of the A5, a bigger screen (4inch +?) or 4G.

But:
- the A5 might still be a bit too power hungry for the phone form factor, or they simply don't have enough production yield yet.
- bigger screen would be more of a "me too" feature imo. It's a phone. When the original iPhone released the first thing I thought was: "why is it so big? That won't fit into my pocket easily..." All those 4.3 inch Android bricks look extremely dorky imo, I don't think the average consumer really wants a bigger screen in a phone than the iPhone's. Besides, the average Apple notebook sold also has a smaller screen than your average Windows machine.
- 4G is a big mess right now, it's not clear what technology Apple should implement. All of them?

I think there's much, much more improvement to be made software wise. So, I think that's where the real focus will be at WWDC: iOS5. Better notifications, widgets, more user friendly multi-tasking,... there's a lot of work for Apple to do.

The same iPhone 4, now with iOS5: it's like a whole new phone.
post #7 of 17
Quote:
Originally Posted by DJinTX View Post

I don't think the decision to wait until September/October for the iPhone has anything to do with the iPod ... they are not companion devices. I can think of no good reason for someone to own both an iPod Touch and an iPhone. ...

This is the very reason why it might make sense to release them both at the same event though.
post #8 of 17
Quote:
Originally Posted by DJinTX View Post

I don't think the decision to wait until September/October for the iPhone has anything to do with the iPod, and I'm not sure why some people are determined to chain these two devices together. Yes, they share alot of components and capabilities, but they are not companion devices. I can think of no good reason for someone to own both an iPod Touch and an iPhone.

However, if there is a small contingent of people who own both, then that's fine I suppose, but I do not believe for a second that Apple feels compelled to release these two products together. I think it is just coincidental for this year. Maybe there is a delay related to design changes and testing. Or maybe Apple is just in the early stages of changing the release cycle so that thay have a single phone for all carriers, and updated hardware can be released simultaneously for all. Since the Verizon model came out in February, the cycle is off balance, so I think they are in the process of rectifying this.

These are the points you bring up that actually defend such a decision to pair the iPod and iPhone releases:
  1. Share components and capabilities (id est, iPhone and iPod Touch).
  2. Little reason for people to own both.

I dont think its coincidental, I think its very intentional. The question is why the change now? We have to remember that Lion is coming this Summer and by the looks of it it will come in early Summer. Thats the timeframe the iPhone usually launches in.

Now lets ignore Lion as a reason for a moment. What are the other reasons that could lead to the iPhone needing to be launched in the Autumn?
  1. Delay in the iOS SDK requiring more time for internal development.
  2. Change in the iOS SDK to allow a larger display (branching of iPhone and Touch) which means more lead time for 3rd-party developers to adapte apps.
  3. Unable to source iPhone 5 component in time for Summer release.
  4. Some difficulty in sourcing components in time for Summer release, but internal roadmap showing that the follow year will be even tougher with a planned move to LTE or true WorldMode device?
  5. With the iPad launching in the Spring having the iPhone launch in the Autumn gives about 6 months separation between their two largest sectors.
  6. As the iPod sector is their smallest HW sector and iPhone their largest combining the two can be more efficient.

There are lots of possibilities. Ive barely even scratched the surface but I wouldnt rule anything out unless you have all the puzzle pieces.
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post #9 of 17
I guess that explosion at the iPas2 production facility is going to change all this. I hope no one was killed, trying to get information but it's still breaking news.
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From Apple ][ - to new Mac Pro I've used them all.
Long on AAPL so biased
"Google doesn't sell you anything, they just sell you!"
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post #10 of 17
Perhaps off-topic, but I was checking my ATT wireless account online last night and I noticed they bumped my eligibility for a new iPhone up to August (8/24/2011). Strange because I got my new iPhone 4 last August (2010) so I shouldn't be eligible until 2012.

I also noticed the other iPhone on my family plan (purchased September 2009) isn't eligible for upgrade until August 2011 so I'm confused why one is full term 2 years and the other is 1 year...unless they want them both to expire in time for us to both buy the new iPhone in September.

Again, off topic I know and I apologize but was curious if anyone else noticed this.
post #11 of 17
Quote:
Originally Posted by DJinTX View Post

I don't think the decision to wait until September/October for the iPhone has anything to do with the iPod, and I'm not sure why some people are determined to chain these two devices together. Yes, they share alot of components and capabilities, but they are not companion devices. I can think of no good reason for someone to own both an iPod Touch and an iPhone.

However, if there is a small contingent of people who own both, then that's fine I suppose, but I do not believe for a second that Apple feels compelled to release these two products together. I think it is just coincidental for this year. Maybe there is a delay related to design changes and testing. Or maybe Apple is just in the early stages of changing the release cycle so that thay have a single phone for all carriers, and updated hardware can be released simultaneously for all. Since the Verizon model came out in February, the cycle is off balance, so I think they are in the process of rectifying this.

Well from my point of view, I find it hard to understand why people don't own and use both an iPhone and an iPod Touch. The phone's 32 GB max storage capacity is hardly enough for music if you use the iPhone as a still and video camera. The 64 GB iPod Touch is still not big enough storage for me just for music. I listen to my always full iPod Touch while my iPhone keeps some space left for shooting stills and movies.

I'm hoping for a 128 GB dual core iPod Touch this Fall and a 64 GB dual core 4LTE iPhone 6 next year. My 2010 AT&T contract won't let me buy a fully subsidized iPhone 5 before Christmas. So I may as well skip this year's incremental model since the 4LTE model is almost a certainty next year. But no matter what it is, I will be buying the dual core '11 iPod Touch maximum ram model in September.

Six x 3.5GHz '14 MP, 64GB, 1TB PCIe, 16TB HDs
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64 ATT iPhone 5S, 128 ATT iPad Air, 128 ATT iPad miniRetina, 16...

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Six x 3.5GHz '14 MP, 64GB, 1TB PCIe, 16TB HDs
2.6GHz 6GB 17"HD LED MBP, Sony 52XBR6 HDTV
EyeTV 500, Hybrid 2G, EyeTV 3 HDTV Recorder
64 ATT iPhone 5S, 128 ATT iPad Air, 128 ATT iPad miniRetina, 16...

Reply
post #12 of 17
At least they have the common sense to call it the "Fifth Generation iPhone". Maybe it's cuz I'm an Apple fan, but It irks me everytime asks about the "iPhone 4G" or the "iPhone 5G" or even how it'll be "running on 5G".

In any case this all makes sense:
-the iPhone 4 was a huge upgrade, with good staying power
-the Verizon iPhone was just launched 3 months ago
-The next model may need to run on both kinds of networks, and may need additional testing

I have only 2 questions:
-If iOS 5 is only PREVIEWED at WWDC in June, does that mean it will not launch until August?
-won't that cause a huge backlog of stuff towards the end of summer, with iOS 5, OS X Lion, and then the 5th-Gen iPhone all being released near-simultaneously?! Perhaps Lion will be released sooner than I'm imagining
post #13 of 17
Maybe the new cheaper iPhone for the prepaid market is actually an iPod touch 3G.
post #14 of 17
What I would love to see is a iPod touch that is like a iPad2 3g. I could do all the things I do with my iPad in a smaller form factor. I can't afford the monthly cost of an iPhone. If I could use my iPad and iPod on the same data account it would cost me about $10 a month. This would be a win win!
post #15 of 17
I have a feeling the work done for the Verizon iphone plus the rumored integration into one universal phone that can be used in the US through AT&T, Verizon or Sprint is the reason for the delay until September.
post #16 of 17
I've not read anything recently about a redesign of the antenna on the new iPhone in September. Anybody know anything or want to weigh in on that one?
post #17 of 17
Quote:
Originally Posted by foxhunter101 View Post

I've not read anything recently about a redesign of the antenna on the new iPhone in September. Anybody know anything or want to weigh in on that one?

We were told last Summer the iPhone 4 wouldnt sell because of the flawed design of putting the antenna on the outside. We were told they would be recalled. We were told they would release a new model by the end of the free Bumper period.

Instead weve had the iPhone sell better in every quarter since its release, even past the holiday quarter when products tend to drop, especially once that are considered more than halfway through their freshness cycle. Weve had Consumer Reports rate the iPhone 4 the highest smartphone despite their inability to recommend the device. Weve had AnandTech state they can get single in places other phones couldnt. Weve had word from non-US iPhone users that they couldnt replicate the issue.

Now we have a pretty convincing anecdotal evidence the next iPhone will be delayed until September, which means another full quarter of sales with the iPhone 4. Excluding the success of the iPhone 4 design, but considering the the iPhone 3 and 3GS didnt change the look of the casing, that radically changing the style of the casing each year adds additional challenges, and that moving back to an internal antenna would take up more room than they might want to spare I think its likely well see an external antenna design evolved with the next model.
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