Piper Jaffray analyst Gene Munster recently raised his target price for Appleis stock from US$160 up to $205. 24/7 Wall St.is Douglas A. McIntyre, however, thinks heis way off base, and even went so far as to call the prediction "nutty."
Mr. Munsteris model for Apple assumes the company will sell 45 million iPhones in 2009. In comparison, Motorola sold 35 million phones in the last quarter, and will sell about 140 million phones for the year. Motorola is also well established in the cell phone market, and has deals with several carriers -- unlike Apple and its exclusive deal with AT&T.
"The idea that Apple will sell a third as many phones at Motorola sells now is not credible. Especially at a price point that would be much higher than the average price that Motorola and Nokia get, which is under $100 per unit," Mr. McIntyre said. "The Apple estimate also assumes that the larger handset companies will not come out with competing phones."
If initial iPhone sales are any indication, Appleis combination iPod and smart phone is already proving to be very popular with consumers. Should Apple be able to maintain interest in the product, just as it has done with the iPod, it could have another runaway hit on its hands -- even if it doesnit sell as many units as Mr. Munster predicts.
Apple is currently trading in the pre-market at $143.05, down 0.70 (0.49%).