After speculative reports of slow sales, iPhone X is now said to be in the "high end of th...

Posted:
in iPhone edited January 2018
Just one week after delivering a widely-distributed report speculatively suggesting that 'weak demand' might result in Apple canceling production of iPhone X this summer, analysts are now lining up to shift their stories in the days before Apple releases its actual fiscal Q1 performance data for the winter quarter. In a remarkable turn, iPhone X is suddenly said to be selling well, and scuttlebutt about slashed component orders is again looking uninformed.


Speculative seeds sprout into scathing sensationalism

Last week, analyst Ming-Chi Kuo made waves based on a channel-checks note which speculated about iPhone quarterly sales through the end of 2018, far in advance of any guidance Apple provides.

Loosely based on his comments, bloggers struggled to determine the most violent word to capitalize in headlines portraying iPhone X as troubled and nearing a brutal execution. Writing for Tom's Guide, Henry T. Casey posted "Apple to Axe Current iPhone X After Slow Sales," claiming "the clock may be ticking on the current version of Apple's notch-bearing iPhone X."

The article stated that "disappointing demand for the smartphone will drive Apple to discontinue this 5.8-inch device, when a new, larger iPhone X Plus (among others) takes its place." It was sourced as a paraphrase of the AppleInsider report actually written from the original Kuo note.

Mainstream news reports portrayed iPhone X's fate as "maybe" even worse than that. Yesterday, Newsweek posted a headline by Anthony Cuthbertson rhetorically asking, "IS APPLE ABOUT TO CANCEL THE IPHONE X? POOR SALES MEAN DEVICE FACES 'END OF LIFE.'"

The tabloid press got even more creative with its capitalization and repetitive use of exaggerated language to enliven the interpretation of a now week-old idea: "DEAD RINGER. Apple could SCRAP iPhone X this year over poor sales of 999 smartphone, as one expert says pricey handset could be dead by the end of summer" wrote Sean Keach, the "Digital Technology and Science Editor" of UK's The Sun. And that was just the headline.

Gordon Kelly, a contributor for Forbes similarly intoned "Apple Leak Reveals Sudden iPhone X Cancellation," upgrading the Kuo note from analyst thoughts to leaked facts directly from Apple. Like every other report on the subject, Kuo is described as a source that "could not be more credible."

The UK's Daily Mail decided to ask its readers if they knew anything about the "leak," adding that the reason for something possibly happening is definitely the design of the iPhone and its TrueDepth sensor, and also, at the same time, a "lack of innovation."

Phoebe Weston was credited for writing the article "Will Apple cancel the iPhone X this summer? Disappointing sales caused by a 'lack of interesting innovations' will end production of the 999 handset, leak claims."

If you predict everything, some of it will be correct

After describing iPhone X last week as failing to capture buyers' interest, particularly in China and specifically because of its TrueDepth sensor notch, Kuo is now describing iPhone X as "a 'strategic success' for Apple.

He noted that iPhone X's innovative depth sensing camera system gives the company a two-year lead over rivals and is cementing long-term competitive advantages with its Face ID and TrueDepth cameras.

"We believe the iPhone X has established a long-term edge for Apple," Kuo stated, a wildly different direction from the last weeks' reporting that just portrayed his previous note as decrying a "lack of interesting innovations."

Walking it back in time for earnings

Kuo (as of this week) isn't alone in expressing a positive impression of iPhone X and its impact on iPhone sales and Apple performance. Ryan Reith of IDC today tweeted that "[calendar] Q4 results for Apple are strong, especially iPhone (and lesser extent iPad). iPhone X hit numbers at the high end of the industry range."

Q4 results for Apple are strong, especially iPhone (and lesser extent iPad). iPhone X hit numbers at the high end of the industry range.

-- Ryan Reith (@ryanreith)


Even The Sun had to admit, at the end of its "DEAD RINGER" article, that "predictions of the iPhone X being culled this year are probably false."

It then cited Analyst Daniel Ives of GBH Insights, who told the publication, "we believe the worries around iPhone X demand have been greatly exaggerated."

CIRP iPhone sales mix
Source: Consumer Intelligence Research Partners


Consumer Intelligence Research Partners, based on a survey of 500 iPhone users between October and December, found that "only" 20 percent had upgraded to iPhone X, besting the installed base of iPhone 8 Plus (at 17 percent), but not exceeding the number who had iPhone 8 (24 percent).

iPhone X also exceeded sales of the now very attractively priced iPhone 7, and the collective sales of all entry-level iPhone 6, 6 Plus and SE models. This occurred despite iPhone X only becoming available in November, five weeks after iPhone 8 and other models went on sale.

The shift in reporting from iPhone being slated for death to iPhone X sales being at the top of Apple's phone mix as well as at the "high end of the industry range" comes as Apple nears its official report of sales in the holiday quarter. Apple has scheduled an earnings conference call for Thursday, February 1.

While the company never breaks down sales of individual models, its earnings information will provide better insight into the company's performance based on metrics including average selling prices, given that both iPhone 8 models and iPhone X are priced higher than previous new iPhone introductions.
watto_cobra
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 38
     :/ ... 
  • Reply 2 of 38
    MacProMacPro Posts: 19,505member
    " ... analysts are now lining up to shift their stories ..."  

    Says it all.
    vukasikaStrangeDaysbb-15lolliverLemonstre@hotmail.comjony0watto_cobra
  • Reply 3 of 38
    I remember this happeing in a previous quarter. I can’t remember if it was a holiday quarter or not, but analysts kept upping their estimates. Apple’s numbers were on the high end of what they had estimated on the previous earnings call but because they were lower than Wall Street consensus estimates the stock tanked after hours. I get the feeling we’re in for another one of those quarters. 
  • Reply 4 of 38
    NY1822NY1822 Posts: 621member
    Magnet for the 1 Trillion $$$ market cap....🚂
  • Reply 5 of 38
    NY1822NY1822 Posts: 621member
    factoring in buybacks that will take the stock price to at least $200
  • Reply 6 of 38
    gatorguygatorguy Posts: 23,467member
    I posted this earlier in the day for those that missed it:


    Another day and another report on 4th quarter iPhone sales, this one worldwide rather than US-specific. 

    According to Canalys (in a report released today) the iPhone X was the most successful smartphone model in the period, shipping 29 million units with 7 million of those slated for Chinese buyers.

    “The iPhone X performance is impressive for a device priced at US$999, but it is slightly below industry expectations,” said Ben Stanton, Analyst at Canalys. “Apple struggled with supply issues in early November, but achieved a massive uplift in production in late November and throughout December. This helped it meet and even exceed demand in some markets by the end of the quarter. One major benefit to Apple is that customers are increasingly realizing the residual value of their old smartphones, opting for trade-in programs to offset the high price of the iPhone X. But that big price tag, and Apple’s split launch strategy, still had an impact, and shipments were not the fastest ever for an iPhone.”
    ronnjony0
  • Reply 7 of 38
    All bollocks. All to make a click or two. Or they change the story to suddenly expect super revenues, just to be disappointed once the real numbers are out. 
    vukasikalolliverwatto_cobra
  • Reply 8 of 38
    philboogiephilboogie Posts: 7,674member
    gatorguy said:
    I posted this earlier in the day for those that missed it:


    Another day and another report on 4th quarter iPhone sales, this one worldwide rather than US-specific. 

    According to Canalys (in a report released today) the iPhone X was the most successful smartphone model in the period, shipping 29 million units with 7 million of those slated for Chinese buyers.
    Strange how a casual reader has this info at their finger tips, yet a website dedicated to Apple news fail to f

    Props to you sir.

  • Reply 9 of 38
    Of course it’s selling well, every iPhone does and this one is the best yet, not like anyone actually believed the rumours that it was failing anyway.
    flashfan207lolliverwatto_cobra
  • Reply 10 of 38
    There are four absolutes in life - One and two - death and taxes. Three - FoxNews launching stories about the 'War on Christmas' starting the first week of every December. Four - gloom and doom articles, predictions, and opinions from analysts starting two weeks prior to quarterly financial results.
    ronnStrangeDayslolliverjony0kuduwatto_cobra
  • Reply 11 of 38
    Mike WuertheleMike Wuerthele Posts: 6,550administrator
    gatorguy said:
    I posted this earlier in the day for those that missed it:


    Another day and another report on 4th quarter iPhone sales, this one worldwide rather than US-specific. 

    According to Canalys (in a report released today) the iPhone X was the most successful smartphone model in the period, shipping 29 million units with 7 million of those slated for Chinese buyers.
    Strange how a casual reader has this info at their finger tips, yet a website dedicated to Apple news fail to f

    Props to you sir.

    Unlike Newsweek, we don't report on market analysis until we get the entire report from the firm. 

    We don't run with just three paragraphs, or an interpretation of somebody else's read.
    ronnlostkiwibb-15macxpressmavemufcgeorgie01lolliverfastasleepwatto_cobra
  • Reply 12 of 38
    lkrupplkrupp Posts: 10,161member
    And to think investors buy and sell on this bullshit, but fear and greed are the name of the game.
    JWSCwatto_cobra
  • Reply 13 of 38
    Ironically 'Kuo' in the Urban Dictionary is defined as 'To do something idiotic'. ie 'Dang, you just pulled a kuo.'
    For this 'analyst' who keeps getting quoted for his mostly inaccurate predictions about Apple, this sounds about right. He burned his credibility years ago.


    lolliverwatto_cobra
  • Reply 14 of 38
    Typical analyst, all hype zero useful information.  I swear I need an analyst job, these idiots are clear paid regardless of performance.
    lolliverwatto_cobra
  • Reply 15 of 38
    gatorguygatorguy Posts: 23,467member
    gatorguy said:
    I posted this earlier in the day for those that missed it:


    Another day and another report on 4th quarter iPhone sales, this one worldwide rather than US-specific. 

    According to Canalys (in a report released today) the iPhone X was the most successful smartphone model in the period, shipping 29 million units with 7 million of those slated for Chinese buyers.
    Strange how a casual reader has this info at their finger tips, yet a website dedicated to Apple news fail to f

    Props to you sir.

    Unlike Newsweek, we don't report on market analysis until we get the entire report from the firm. 

    We don't run with just three paragraphs, or an interpretation of somebody else's read.
    FWIW the snippet I posted was from the early press release they sent me, and I totally agree it's simply proper journalism to wait for the entire report before doing an actual article here. No reflection whatsoever on AI and none was intended. 
    edited January 2018 muthuk_vanalingam
  • Reply 16 of 38
    igorskyigorsky Posts: 650member
    Explain to me again why Kuo is still considered some sort of VIP insider to Apple info? Because he got a few guesses right that anyone else could've guessed? Give me a break. And his point about them ending the current iPhone X so that they can have a 6.1" phone and 6.5" phone in the same lineup is beyond absurd.
    edited January 2018 watto_cobra
  • Reply 17 of 38
    rob53rob53 Posts: 3,057member
    gatorguy said:
    I posted this earlier in the day for those that missed it:


    Another day and another report on 4th quarter iPhone sales, this one worldwide rather than US-specific. 

    According to Canalys (in a report released today) the iPhone X was the most successful smartphone model in the period, shipping 29 million units with 7 million of those slated for Chinese buyers.
    Strange how a casual reader has this info at their finger tips, yet a website dedicated to Apple news fail to f

    Props to you sir.

    @gatorguy is anything but casual and you should know that. 
    StrangeDayslollivermuthuk_vanalingamwatto_cobra
  • Reply 18 of 38
    StrangeDaysStrangeDays Posts: 12,252member
    articles about rumors of rumors, with each step removed attributing more of it as fact. nuts. 

    BTW Daringfireball’s John Gruber did a piece on Mike’s AI story:

    https://daringfireball.net/2018/01/iphone_x_one_year
    edited January 2018
  • Reply 19 of 38
    MacProMacPro Posts: 19,505member
    gatorguy said:
    gatorguy said:
    I posted this earlier in the day for those that missed it:


    Another day and another report on 4th quarter iPhone sales, this one worldwide rather than US-specific. 

    According to Canalys (in a report released today) the iPhone X was the most successful smartphone model in the period, shipping 29 million units with 7 million of those slated for Chinese buyers.
    Strange how a casual reader has this info at their finger tips, yet a website dedicated to Apple news fail to f

    Props to you sir.

    Unlike Newsweek, we don't report on market analysis until we get the entire report from the firm. 

    We don't run with just three paragraphs, or an interpretation of somebody else's read.
    FWIW the snippet I posted was from the early press release they sent me, and I totally agree it's simply proper journalism to wait for the entire report before doing an actual article here. No reflection whatsoever on AI and none was intended. 
    So you get sent press releases ... ?
    lostkiwiwatto_cobra
  • Reply 20 of 38
    mnbob1mnbob1 Posts: 269member
    I seem to remember Tim Cook to never base Apple product sales or projections on supply-chain channel reports as Mr. Kuo most often does. It's been awhile but I think he said it's not an indicator of Apple sales or manufacturing. So many analysts seem to want to see the iPhone X fail for some reason. Of course the stock market runs on lies and conjecture. Get analysts to provide high earnings projections for Apple ahead of reporting and watch all the speculators win big. Apple has become a stock that will continue to be manipulated by analyst whims in order to put more money in their clients pockets because of the product cycle and high sales volume in the final quarter. The technology that Apple uses has made supply-channel checks easy. However, Apple appears to be creating more partners for key components and diversifying their channel. If Apple were to acquire some of the smaller key component manufacturers in order to prevent them from publicly announcing that their revenues were down due to Apple or create a different contract structure that keeps them financially afloat until the next orders come in.

    Of course, If I was as big as Apple and as hardened as Tim Cook I just wouldn't give a shit and keep on innovating and making money. I think that's exactly what they're doing.
    watto_cobra
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