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Strong iPhone 5 launch in China highlights Apple's 'enormous' growth opportunity

post #1 of 15
Thread Starter 
Greater China has become an increasingly important part of Apple's business, generating about 15 percent of the company's fiscal 2012 sales, and the nation's role is expected to grow even more with a particularly strong debut for the iPhone 5.

After Apple announced on Sunday that it sold more than 2 million iPhone 5 units in China over the device's launch weekend, Wall Street analysts reacted positively to the news. Brian White of Topeka Capital Markets noted it's the first time ever that Apple has issued a post-launch press release for an iPhone in China.

The strong start for the iPhone 5 should address concerns held by some investors that the device was off to a slow start in China. Some of those beliefs stemmed from reports of small crowds at Apple's retail stores, complaints that were proven unfounded because of Apple's new online reservation system designed specifically to cut down on crowds.

During the third quarter of 2012, Canalys estimates that more than 50 million smartphones were shipped in China, with Apple holding an 8 percent share. There are a total of 212.1 million 3G subscribers in the nation, representing 93 percent year over year growth.

Given these statistics, White characterized the opportunity for Apple in China as "enormous." He believes 3G subscribers in China will reach 230 million by the end of 2012, and as many as 350 million by the end of 2013.

iPhone 5


Brian Marshall with ISI Group noted that Apple sold 5 million iPhone 5 units when the handset debuted in 9 countries, including the U.S., in September. He estimates that about 2 million iPhone 5 units were sold by U.S. carriers in the first 10 days of launch, giving Apple about a 1 percent penetration of a post-paid subscriber base of around 200 million.

"In a shorter timespan of just 3 days, AAPL sold over (2 million) units at China Unicom and China Telecom, or (about 1.5 percent) penetration of a (130 million) 3G subscriber base," Marshall said. "In our view, this suggests potential for subscriber penetration in China could be similar to that of developed countries, despite per capita GDP that is less than 1/5 of the U.S."

For Marshall, the success of the iPhone 5 further highlights the potential of a deal with China Mobile, the largest carrier in the world with about 700 million subscribers. That's nearly double the 400 million subscribers Apple currently has access to through China Unicom and China Telecom.

Marshall sees a potential deal with China Mobile in 2013 as a "significant" catalyst for Apple that could drive growth next year.

Finally, Shaw Wu with Sterne Agee also noted that the iPhone 5 launch in China was "strong," and Apple's sales of 2 million "should help quell investor concerns." He noted that Apple did not provide any iPhone 4S sales, which makes it impossible to put the iPhone 5 launch in context, but carrier China Unicom did see its preorders grow by 50 percent.

"We remain comfortable with our above consensus iPhone forecast looking for 47.5 million units for the December quarter," Wu said. "We continue to believe iPhone 5 is a significant update positioned to drive a powerful product cycle."
post #2 of 15
So which is it: Is Apple's iPhone launch in China 'strong' as this article suggests, or disappointing as the previous article suggests? 1oyvey.gif

Why does anyone pay attention to these analysts?
"I'm way over my head when it comes to technical issues like this"
Gatorguy 5/31/13
Reply
"I'm way over my head when it comes to technical issues like this"
Gatorguy 5/31/13
Reply
post #3 of 15
Quote:
Originally Posted by jragosta View Post

So which is it: Is Apple's iPhone launch in China 'strong' as this article suggests, or disappointing as the previous article suggests? 1oyvey.gif
Why does anyone pay attention to these analysts?

 

Because they're almost always correct.

 

/s

post #4 of 15

And yet it's falling. AAPL 502$ right now.

post #5 of 15
why isn't there any punishment for these "analysts" when they are wrong and are just manipulating stock prices?
post #6 of 15
No , they can freely bullshit . In fact , real cleverer investors won't care about these bullshit . In fact when they say sell in fact it is a buy .
post #7 of 15
Quote:
Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post

Brian White of Topeka Capital Markets noted it's the first time ever that Apple has issued a post-launch press release for an iPhone in China.

I'm glad they released some positive facts to try to counteract the flood of negative stories lately.
post #8 of 15

Analysts are ranked and paid according to the accuracy of their calls.  To posit that they manipulate or intentionally tank a stock is really B.S.

 

What is happening on "The Street," now is more of a copycat scenario than an evil conspiracy.  Analysts with weak conviction and weak knees (Citi) feel obliged to lower estimates and valuation based mostly on what other analysts have said.  It becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy.

 

What AAPL shareholders need now is the "Put Up" to "Shut Up" the negative voices.

 

This morning, we got the first glimpse of iP5 sales in China, and they are fantastic.  So much for the WSJ B.S. about the singleton in line in Shanghai.  2 million phones and counting.  And, we have more countries rolling out in this, the biggest international release in the company's history.

 

We also have news on the conquest sales of iPad Mini.  It is not a cannibal!

 

Q1 earnings will be the supreme test.  We need extraordinary numbers, sales and GM to hose down the last embers.

post #9 of 15
After reading stock articles about Apple Inc I often wonder if they'd be better off as a privately held comp like SC Johnson. 👎on Investors.
post #10 of 15
Quote:
Originally Posted by NelsonX View Post

And yet it's falling. AAPL 502$ right now.

 

And it's back to $514.14.

 

CitiGroup has/had a huge short on Apple, hence the manipulation in pre-market trading.

post #11 of 15
AI stands for AppleInsider - But the news it post has nothing "insider" about it. It appears that it repost anything that is out there - even if the news is contradictory to earlier one. If you are Apple investor, just this is tide blow over - Wait till the earnings report in January!

I will say one thing, Tim - Please ease off on the multiple model approach - Apple did this while back and Steve nixed it as soon as he got back. We are now kind of going back towards that. Don't cave in! That applies to pricing! Walmart is selling iPhone 5 at $127.00 with 2 years contract - And this deal was blessed by Apple. You don't need to do this. People are buying at $199. If you want to introduce low priced model for countries with non-subsidizued market in Europe and Asia, than just do it there to kill of the Samsungs and LGs.
post #12 of 15

I was quite disappointed when so many went with the palpably silly "only ONE person in line in China!" storyline given the almost universal knowledge that had to be out there that Apple, in light of the previous riots, had substantially changed the sales system in that country. There's innocent error and there's whatever one wants to call seemingly deliberate ignoring (or willful lack of any effort at looking deeper than the photo) of commonly held facts.

post #13 of 15
Quote:
Originally Posted by radster360 View Post

AI stands for AppleInsider - But the news it post has nothing "insider" about it. It appears that it repost anything that is out there - even if the news is contradictory to earlier one. If you are Apple investor, just this is tide blow over - Wait till the earnings report in January!
I will say one thing, Tim - Please ease off on the multiple model approach - Apple did this while back and Steve nixed it as soon as he got back. We are now kind of going back towards that. Don't cave in! That applies to pricing! Walmart is selling iPhone 5 at $127.00 with 2 years contract - And this deal was blessed by Apple. You don't need to do this. People are buying at $199. If you want to introduce low priced model for countries with non-subsidizued market in Europe and Asia, than just do it there to kill of the Samsungs and LGs.
Apple has no control over Walmart pricing. Those that reported that they had Apple's blessing are totally clueless.
post #14 of 15
This story, reported here and elsewhere, totally misses the other part of this story which is that hundreds of thousands of iPhone 5's have also been smuggled into the country. There is no "China demand problem".
post #15 of 15
Here's the other massive growth opportunity in China: Android.
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