How Many iPhones Did Apple Sell In The March Quarter?

  • Posted: 18 April 2012 08:35 AM #46

    One item I haven’t seen discussed is the addition of Sprint to the carrier lineup. With that occurring with the release of the 4S during Q1, how do you think that affects Q2 sales? I guess my thinking is that consumers on Sprint were more likely to pile in on the release, and numbers would face a sharper decline in subsequent quarters.

    Although Sprint’s numbers do not carry the volume that Verizon and AT&T do. I don’t think this will have a significant effect, I was just curious what others thought.

         
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    Posted: 18 April 2012 08:07 PM #47

    AppleDoc - 18 April 2012 11:35 AM

    One item I haven’t seen discussed is the addition of Sprint to the carrier lineup. With that occurring with the release of the 4S during Q1, how do you think that affects Q2 sales? I guess my thinking is that consumers on Sprint were more likely to pile in on the release, and numbers would face a sharper decline in subsequent quarters.

    Although Sprint’s numbers do not carry the volume that Verizon and AT&T do. I don’t think this will have a significant effect, I was just curious what others thought.

    I would expect the numbers will be less then last qtr, but since most subscribers are on a 2 yr contract, many folks will wait till they can get a fully subsidized phone so sales will be spread.  For AT&T the majority of iPhone buyers are repeat customers so the combination of contact expiration and new phone resulted in a huge AT&T number.  The folks expecting a new iPhone in July delayed purchase and sales were pushed to the December Qtr.  One of the challenges for Sprint is the network incompatibilites.  They picked WiMAX as their 4G standard and now are having to retool and will switch to LTE in 2013.  sprint will have an LTE iPhone before they have an LTE network.  I think they were hoping to buy wholesale from Light Squared, but the regulators don’t like how Light Squared’s satellite interferes with GPS so Sprint is in search of a LTE network.

         
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    Posted: 19 April 2012 10:30 AM #48

    So VZ went from 4.3m iphones in Q4 2011 to 3.2m in Q4 2012.  Is it fair to extrapolate other carriers at the same drop?  3.2 is about 75% of 4.3

    AT&T sold 7.6m in Q4 2011, which if they trailed off the same, would bring them in around 5.65m iphones. 

    If you went for the whole number of 37m iphones, then it would come in at 27.75m iphones.  BUT, I think there should be much more phones sold overseas this quarter than last.  So I think that will help make up some the difference.

         
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    Posted: 19 April 2012 10:47 AM #49

    terps530 - 19 April 2012 01:30 PM

    So VZ went from 4.3m iphones in Q4 2011 to 3.2m in Q4 2012.  Is it fair to extrapolate other carriers at the same drop?  3.2 is about 75% of 4.3

    AT&T sold 7.6m in Q4 2011, which if they trailed off the same, would bring them in around 5.65m iphones. 

    If you went for the whole number of 37m iphones, then it would come in at 27.75m iphones.  BUT, I think there should be much more phones sold overseas this quarter than last.  So I think that will help make up some the difference.

    I had an estimate of 32.5 million iPhones sold this quarter. I now think that this number will be beaten since China and the ramp-up in other markets could close the 25% gap in the US and other markets that started selling the 4S in the beginning of October. 35 million quite possible. 37 million not impossible.

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  • Posted: 19 April 2012 10:51 AM #50

    Verizon sold 6.3 smartphones in this quarter.  3.2 million (50.07%) of these were iPhones.  I wonder what the percent of iphone sales is a AT&T and Sprint.  It would be interesting to see if this percentage is expanding or contracting.

         
  • Posted: 19 April 2012 10:52 AM #51

    terps530 - 19 April 2012 01:30 PM

    So VZ went from 4.3m iphones in Q4 2011 to 3.2m in Q4 2012.  Is it fair to extrapolate other carriers at the same drop?  3.2 is about 75% of 4.3

    AT&T sold 7.6m in Q4 2011, which if they trailed off the same, would bring them in around 5.65m iphones. 

    If you went for the whole number of 37m iphones, then it would come in at 27.75m iphones.  BUT, I think there should be much more phones sold overseas this quarter than last.  So I think that will help make up some the difference.

    The 4S was available for ~50 carrier quarters during the holiday quarter. It was likely available for ~150 carrier quarters in the March quarter. So, availability (as defined by carrier quarters) for the new iPhone tripled in the March quarter. I suspect true availability (as defined by subscriber quarters) at least doubled which tells me there will be a sequential increase in the number of 4S units sold. Will that translate to total iPhone unit sequential growth? We shall see shortly.

         
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    Posted: 19 April 2012 11:24 AM #52

    I agree…..add in the huge new numbers from China Telecom and the China Mobile “unauthorized” users, which is very large…to Unicom’s sales and a great deal of any purported shortfall is sopped up.

    China growth alone in the quarter will be huge, not to mention the other 145 international carriers. Siri added Japanese this quarter and the iPhone is the most popular phone in Japan now…...that, too, could be a real upside surprise.

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    Posted: 19 April 2012 11:28 AM #53

    I have a question- does anyone know if iphone sales in China are subsidized to the public through their carrier, the way it is here?

    I was trying to find any iphone sales data in China, but what I did find is that the 4S costs 4988 yuan, which is almost $800 USD.  I am wondering is that what people have to pay there for the phone, or is it less through phone service?

    A couple articles say the iphone is the ultimate status symbol in China, and was only 5.7% of the market share (Android had 68% (both as of Q4 2011).  I wonder when that figure will start to balance out etc, and why.  That clearly will bring in HUGE amounts of money if/when it happens.

         
  • Posted: 19 April 2012 11:31 AM #54

    I was expecting somewhat lower iPhone sales in the US but only about 10%. My 38m iPhone number seems really high now. I don’t expect Europe to do much better but I’m confident in the Asia Pacific region (especially Greater China, Japan, Korea). Brazil/India/Russia should also have some better numbers than in past years but they are still somewhat lagging behind, even all three of them combined can’t come close to China.

         
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    Posted: 19 April 2012 11:31 AM #55

    I am still comfortable with my 38 million number.  International sales are the key.

    I think a decrease from Verizon this quarter simply points out that folks are not flocking to Verizon just because they got the iPhone.  With no data access with voice and a much slower data, consumers will continue to move ot ATT..

         
  • Posted: 19 April 2012 11:37 AM #56

    terps530 - 19 April 2012 02:28 PM

    I have a question- does anyone know if iphone sales in China are subsidized to the public through their carrier, the way it is here?

    To my knowledge, they are not subsidized at all. Data plans in China are also significantly cheaper. I believe the discounted data plans more than makeup for the cost difference of the phone. Although I can’t find the numbers I’ve seen mentioned before.

    I agree that international growth will allow for an iPhone beat this quarter. That’s really where the money is it. Too many “analysts” overlook that.

         
  • Posted: 19 April 2012 11:41 AM #57

    terps530 - 19 April 2012 02:28 PM

    I have a question- does anyone know if iphone sales in China are subsidized to the public through their carrier, the way it is here?

    I was trying to find any iphone sales data in China, but what I did find is that the 4S costs 4988 yuan, which is almost $800 USD.  I am wondering is that what people have to pay there for the phone, or is it less through phone service?

    A couple articles say the iphone is the ultimate status symbol in China, and was only 5.7% of the market share (Android had 68% (both as of Q4 2011).  I wonder when that figure will start to balance out etc, and why.  That clearly will bring in HUGE amounts of money if/when it happens.

    They are subsidized, you can get an iPhone 4S for free with the right contract (two or three years). You can find information quite easily via Google, look for China Telecom iPhone 4S offers.

    The iPhone is a status symbol and sales are huge. Can’t wait until we get real China Mobile iPhones. grin

         
  • Posted: 19 April 2012 12:15 PM #58

    omacvi - 19 April 2012 02:31 PM

    I am still comfortable with my 38 million number.  International sales are the key.

    I think a decrease from Verizon this quarter simply points out that folks are not flocking to Verizon just because they got the iPhone.  With no data access with voice and a much slower data, consumers will continue to move ot ATT..

    The decrease this Q at Verizon merely reflects intra-carrier iPhone seasonality. This is nothing new and is not a surprise. I’d bet a fortune ATT saw a similar sequential decline. The iPhone story is one of secular intra-carrier growth (but not enough to completely offset natural seasonality in the smartphone industry) and massive carrier expansion. Going from 50 carrier quarters for the 4S in the holiday Q to 150 or so in the March Q to 250 or so in the current Q could lead to two quarters of sequential unit growth. Right now carrier expansion is the name of the game and we get the added bonus of an intra-carrier shift going on globally from dumb to smart phones.

         
  • Posted: 19 April 2012 01:11 PM #59

    Verizon saw a 25.58% decline in iPhone activations QOQ - it’s first quarter in which we could compare Q1 over Q4 sales. AT&T saw the following:

    2011 Q1 QOQ / -12.2%
    2010 Q1 QOQ / -12.9%
    2009 Q1 QOQ / -15.79%

    So if AT&T saw a similar drop as AT&T - it’s a much higher drop than what AT&T normally has going from Q4 to Q1. On top of that, Verizon activates each quarter about 11.5% of all iPhones sold ever since 2011 Q1. It’s been very steady. That translates to about 28 million iPhones sold this quarter. Not very good.

    But, on the other hand - if we apply a similar drop QOQ to AT&T - that translates to AT&T activating about 5.7 million iPhones. Now AT&T had dropped to about 16% of total iPhones activated in 2011 Q3 - a steady decline over the past three years. Last quarter, they jumped up to 21%, mainly because of the huge pent up demand from all those AT&T customers waiting for the 4S. So if we go back to the 2011 Q3 iPhone share and assume AT&T indeed sold 5.7 million iPhones - that puts total iPhones sold this quarter at 38 Million - right in line with a lot of our estimates!

    So one of two things is likely to happen. Either Verizon’s total iPhone share drops nearly 40% to 8.42% or AT&T’s QOQ drop is much higher than Verizon’s - around 40% with only 4.25M iPhones sold. Let’s hope for a much lower Verizon percentage of total iPhones sold.

         
  • Posted: 19 April 2012 02:45 PM #60

    terps530 - 19 April 2012 02:28 PM

    I have a question- does anyone know if iphone sales in China are subsidized to the public through their carrier, the way it is here?

    I was trying to find any iphone sales data in China, but what I did find is that the 4S costs 4988 yuan, which is almost $800 USD.  I am wondering is that what people have to pay there for the phone, or is it less through phone service?

    A couple articles say the iphone is the ultimate status symbol in China, and was only 5.7% of the market share (Android had 68% (both as of Q4 2011).  I wonder when that figure will start to balance out etc, and why.  That clearly will bring in HUGE amounts of money if/when it happens.

    Most handsets sold in China are not subsidized (pre-pay accounts).  However, Apple is working with its authorized carriers to shift its customers to post paid accounts.  This enables subsidies to be paid, reducing initial handset cost.  Apple’s efforts are paying off very well, but I don’t know what the mis is.  If anything the shift to post-paid will increase iPhone unit sales.

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