RBC on shortage; Apple vs. Big Apple; T-Mobile's 99 Euro iPhones

Posted:
in iPhone edited January 2014
An RBC analyst says that demand, not future models, are dictating the sudden iPhone shortage. Meanwhile, Apple assures buyers that more are on the way, the company is fighting New York City over an apple logo, and T-Mobile Germany is the first to subsidize the iPhone's price with different plans.



RBC: iPhone shortfall result of huge demand



Claims that Apple's sudden lack of iPhones is sign of an imminent upgrade to 3G are unrealistic, Royal Bank analyst Mike Abramsky said on Thursday in a note to investors.



Instead, Apple is more likely to have simply underestimated demand. Investigations suggest that the iPhone maker dropped its build rate by as much as 50 percent in the first quarter of 2008, assuming that demand would drop sharply after the holiday; that sales rate remained steady, Abramsky says. He also notes that Apple has had a recurring difficulty in estimating iPhone demand, including sales of unlocked devices.



An early 3G iPhone launch ignores a number of factors, the RBC researcher notes, including the need to receive government approval and the timing of the version 2.0 firmware update in June, which presents a more likely opportunity.



Still, Abramsky adds, the problem is one Apple is glad to have. The company "probably feels like the dog that caught the car," he says.



Apple responds to iPhone shortage concerns



Until now the only party remaining silent on the subject of its iPhone shortage, Apple on Thursday chimed in on the subject in response to a New York Times inquiry. Spokesman Steve Dowling responded briefly by noting that a steady supply of shipments is still enroute.



"We are working to replenish iPhone supplies as quickly as we can," he says in a prepared statement.



Dowling declined to provide an explanation for the shortage.



Apple disputes New York City campaign logo



Although it runs three flagship retail stores in New York City, Apple is taking the local government to task for attempting to trademark a logo resembling its namesake fruit.



While the city's emblem -- meant for the GreeNYC environmental campaign -- bears little direct similarity to Apple's partly-eaten version, the appearance is close enough that Apple has filed its formal opposition to the registration of the trademark.



The use of the logo by New York would "seriously injure" Apple's reputation by causing confusion and diluting the brand, Apple claims.



The protest will require that an independent survey take place to determine whether claims of confusion are well-founded.



T-Mobile Germany to subsidize iPhone price during promo



Apple has historically resisted subsidizing the iPhone's price with subscriptions since its debut, but that should change as of next week, according to reports.



Starting April 7th, T-Mobile Germany is expected to run a promotional campaign that will discount the price of an 8GB iPhone by increasing amounts depending on the customer's subscription plan. A customer of the 89-Euro Complete XL plan, which offers 1,000 minutes per month, will pay just 99 Euros for the phone itself.



Having obtained a full chart for the campaign, German site iFun has also learned that less costly Complete L and M lans will offer the phone for 149 and 199 Euros. A fourth plan, the Complete S plan, will offer just 50 minutes of calling and caps data to 500MB but will still offer the phone for 249 Euros, or 150 Euros less than its normal asking price.



Notably, the sale is due to end on June 30th, shortly after Apple expects to ship its version 2.0 firmware upgrade.
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 65
    MacProMacPro Posts: 17,901member
    Apple are taking legal action against someone else? Wow, this is a change lol
  • Reply 2 of 65
    merdheadmerdhead Posts: 587member
    This is testament to how badly (in a relative sense) sales are going in Europe. I can definitely see 3G being shipped in June/July. I wonder if Apple is looking at all this demand around the world and thinking about abandoning exclusive arrangements going forward. They must surely stand to make much more money if they sell the phone for $250 more without a contract and sell to all sorts of retailers, much like they do with their iPods. I think they probably underestimated the level of demand worldwide and how much people resent having to go with one carrier. The problems with this idea is that visual voicemail is not going to work in all cases and the bundled and unlimited data will not be consistent, an important part of the user experience. I think longer term though the financial pressure will be too much. As they start out and have difficulty with supply its not a big deal not being able to satisfy worldwide demand, but as they ramp up, they would be stupid not to sell the phone where they could. They're poised to capture a large portion of the high-end phone market, just as their iPod business reaches saturation point.
  • Reply 3 of 65
    citycity Posts: 522member
    It's been "the Big Apple" for a long time. Next they could file against Apple One Employment Agency or anybody that sells apples or apple pie
  • Reply 4 of 65
    solipsismsolipsism Posts: 25,726member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by city View Post


    It's been "the Big Apple" for a long time. Next they could file against Apple One Employment Agency or anybody that sells apples or apple pie



    This is very petty. I can't see anyone confusing the two and I see this as hurting Apple's brand in the shortrun.
  • Reply 5 of 65
    monstrositymonstrosity Posts: 2,182member
    if like me you have never heard of the phrase "The Dog that Caught the Car"



    it means...



    "Usually if you hear the phrase "the dog that caught the car", it's about someone who worked really hard for something and then didn't know what to do with it"
  • Reply 6 of 65
    physguyphysguy Posts: 915member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by merdhead View Post


    This is testament to how badly (in a relative sense) sales are going in Europe. I can definitely see 3G being shipped in June/July. I wonder if Apple is looking at all this demand around the world and thinking about abandoning exclusive arrangements going forward. They must surely stand to make much more money if they sell the phone for $250 more without a contract and sell to all sorts of retailers, much like they do with their iPods. I think they probably underestimated the level of demand worldwide and how much people resent having to go with one carrier. The problems with this idea is that visual voicemail is not going to work in all cases and the bundled and unlimited data will not be consistent, an important part of the user experience. I think longer term though the financial pressure will be too much. As they start out and have difficulty with supply its not a big deal not being able to satisfy worldwide demand, but as they ramp up, they would be stupid not to sell the phone where they could. They're poised to capture a large portion of the high-end phone market, just as their iPod business reaches saturation point.



    I don't understand what you saying wrt this article. The article (right or wrong) says that demand is significantly ahead of Apple's expectations. This would say that their current strategy (right or wrong IYO) is working better than expected. Why would this drive them to change their strategy????
  • Reply 7 of 65
    adjeiadjei Posts: 738member
    Looks like iphones are hot in Russia:



    http://www.bloomberg.com/apps/news?p...jBw&refer=home
  • Reply 8 of 65
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by physguy View Post


    I don't understand what you saying wrt this article. The article (right or wrong) says that demand is significantly ahead of Apple's expectations. This would say that their current strategy (right or wrong IYO) is working better than expected. Why would this drive them to change their strategy????



    no, the article has different, separated topics. one of them is the iphone shortages. in that case, yes, demand is ahead of apple's expectations.



    but a part of his comment is in regard to the other mini story, about the way the iphone is being sold in europe. there's the idea that apple would just be better off selling the device unlocked, with no carrier discounts, for whatever price they suggest, so they sell as many as they can (the same way they do with ipods... because after all, the iphone is also an ipod --and more) and then people would choose the carrier of their choice. there would be no support for visual voicemail, but that may be offset by not having to unlock/jailbreak the device and having a steady stream of official sw updates from apple.
  • Reply 9 of 65
    "Apple has historically resisted subsidizing the iPhone's price with subscriptions since its debut, but that should change as of next week, according to reports."



    Correct me if I'm wrong but Apple gets money from the retail sale AND the service plan, so that IS subsidizing the price of the phone.
  • Reply 10 of 65
    solipsismsolipsism Posts: 25,726member
    .....
  • Reply 11 of 65
    meelashmeelash Posts: 1,045member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by city View Post


    It's been "the Big Apple" for a long time. Next they could file against Apple One Employment Agency or anybody that sells apples or apple pie



    Quote:
    Originally Posted by solipsism View Post


    This is very petty. I can't see anyone confusing the two and I see this as hurting Apple's brand in the shortrun.



    I think this lawsuit is just Apple playing it safe. Taking action against trademark infringement, even when it is unlikely to win, protects your trademark in the future for true infringement cases.



    If you don't defend your trademark, others can claim legal precedence later on. It doesn't matter if you won or lost...
  • Reply 12 of 65
    solipsismsolipsism Posts: 25,726member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by meelash View Post


    I think this lawsuit is just Apple playing it safe. Taking action against trademark infringement, even when it is unlikely to win, protects your trademark in the future for true infringement cases.



    If you don't defend your trademark, others can claim legal precedence later on. It doesn't matter if you won or lost...



    I concede. Adaequatio intellectûs nostri cum re.
  • Reply 13 of 65
    A 50min a month plan? That should be free, it's just a freaking joke!
  • Reply 14 of 65
    the 2 apples look different, whts the big deal about it?
  • Reply 15 of 65
    MacProMacPro Posts: 17,901member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by mrsteveman1 View Post


    "Apple has historically resisted subsidizing the iPhone's price with subscriptions since its debut, but that should change as of next week, according to reports."



    Correct me if I'm wrong but Apple gets money from the retail sale AND the service plan, so that IS subsidizing the price of the phone.



    Or you could argue it is the opposite.
  • Reply 16 of 65
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Adjei View Post


    Looks like iphones are hot in Russia:



    http://www.bloomberg.com/apps/news?p...jBw&refer=home



    Privyet Yabloko means Hello Apple in Russian
  • Reply 17 of 65
    tenobelltenobell Posts: 7,014member
    Quote:

    I think they probably underestimated the level of demand worldwide and how much people resent having to go with one carrier. The problems with this idea is that visual voicemail is not going to work in all cases and the bundled and unlimited data will not be consistent, an important part of the user experience. I think longer term though the financial pressure will be too much.



    From what we've heard from Apple executives what they want most is for the iPhone to have a consistent user experience. They did not want to leave it to carriers charging various different prices or offer various different functionality for the phone. Apple wants to control the user experience and platform development.



    Of course Apple will not forever lock the iPhone to one carrier that would be foolish. But in these early stages of development, the situation gives Apple the leverage to build the platform the way it wants to.
  • Reply 18 of 65
    melgrossmelgross Posts: 31,341member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by physguy View Post


    I don't understand what you saying wrt this article. The article (right or wrong) says that demand is significantly ahead of Apple's expectations. This would say that their current strategy (right or wrong IYO) is working better than expected. Why would this drive them to change their strategy????



    Demand in the US is outstripping demand, not in Europe, where sales are still somewhat disappointing.
  • Reply 19 of 65
    melgrossmelgross Posts: 31,341member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by mrsteveman1 View Post


    "Apple has historically resisted subsidizing the iPhone's price with subscriptions since its debut, but that should change as of next week, according to reports."



    Correct me if I'm wrong but Apple gets money from the retail sale AND the service plan, so that IS subsidizing the price of the phone.



    That's hard to say. After all, you can buy the phone without any plan, at the same price you can buy it with a plan.
  • Reply 20 of 65
    charelcharel Posts: 93member
    Apple seems to be unaware of their potential for sales outside the USA. There is a huge potential market that they somehow treat as second class. They overcharge their customers, are very slow in establishing Apple stores except perhaps in anglophone countries and have none of the hype you see in the US. I have yet to see an Apple ad on TV for instance.



    They should wake-up to the potential. Disappointing iPhone sales in Europe are not the only signal.
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