It’s The Holiday Rage Cannon, Charlie Brown

The Daily Observation Deck Feature

What do you see from the Observation Deck, Charlie Brown? Well, we’ve got our eyes on Evercore cutting tech expectations for everyone but Apple, along with growing popularity of Apple products among teens. There’s more information on Apple shifting its production away from India, and, of course, no Charlie Brown on PBS this holiday season.

Evercore Cuts Tech Expectations (Leaves Apple Untouched)

It’s another of those “things aren’t looking great for tech” stories — Apple not included. We got one of those earlier in the week when market tracker IDC said computer shipments were down across the board — Mac shipments not included. That story got confusing though when IDC competitor Gartner indicated that computer shipments were down across the board — including Mac shipments.

This one’s a bit different though, since it’s really just one guy deciding. That guy is Evercore analyst Amit Daryanani. On Tuesday, Apple 3.0 ran part of a note he wrote. That had the analyst cutting estimates on tech across the board — Apple not included. Quoting his note:

We see risk to CY23 estimates across most companies in our coverage as multiple headwinds (strong US dollar, soaring energy prices in Europe, rising interest rates to combat persisting inflation, etc.) will likely temper CY23 expectations and guides. Hence, we are lowering estimates for FY23 across the board as we think the street needs to temper current top and bottom-line expectations for companies in our coverage and beyond. 

Two points of concern noted in the note include a weakening PC market and smaller growth for IT budgets than those expected by the Street. All of that said, Daryanani was careful to cut around three companies: The computer networking company Arista Networks, the data center equipment and services firm Vertiv Holdings, and Apple. Quoting his note again:

While sept-qtr results should be fine, we see growing risk to Dec-qtr and importantly CY23 estimates given increased macro risk that will temper IT budgets and result in a more prudent but conservative stance from companies.

Mr. Daryanani has an “Outperform” rating on Apple shares. His price target on the shares is $190.

Latest Piper Sandler Survey Shows Strength for Apple Among U.S. Teens

Good news for Apple from kids across the country. AppleInsider has word of Piper Sandler’s latest survey of the group. The site says the firm has done that thing they do: surveyed over 14-thousand teens in 47 states from households with an average income of $66,000. According to the findings, respondents (roughly 16 years of age) are into iPhone and into Apple Watch. Pulling some stats:

  • iPhone ownership among the group still sits at 87%
  • iPhone intent to purchase still sits at 88%
  • Apple Watch ownership is now at 31% — That’s up from 30% earlier this year and 25% this time last year
  • Apple Watch intent to purchase has moved from 14% to 16%

The firm says it believes “the elevated penetration and intention are important given the mature premium smartphone market.” The analysts go on to say:

…these trends are encouraging as [Apple] continues to introduce new iPhones, which could provide a significant product cycle refresh… We think these positive trends can also be a catalyst for further services growth as well, as the install base for Apple hardware continues to grow.

Piper Sandler has a “Buy” rating on Apple shares. The firm’s price target on the shares is $195. 

Ming-Chi Kuo Lays Out Apple Manufacturing Map

It looks like Apple is not looking at production in places instead of China. Rather they’re eyeing “in addition to.” That’s the latest from TF International analyst Ming-Chi Kuo. In a series of Tweets on Tuesday the analyst laid out what he sees as Apple’s manufacturing roadmap. According to that, Apple will get the Indian conglomerate Tata Group together with either Pegatron or Wistron to work on iPhone assembly on the subcontinent. That would seem to support talk we heard last month from The Indian Express that had Tata in talks with Wistron about producing iPhone in India. According to one of Tuesday’s Twitter posts:

The potential cooperation of Tata Group and Pegatron or Wistron can accelerate the increase in the proportion of non-China iPhone production.

The implication from the analyst’s Twitter thread is that Tata + the other manufacturers would equal more iPhone exports from India. The thread points out that over “80% of the iPhones made in India (by Foxconn) are currently to meet domestic demand.”

So, more of the planet’s iPhones will come from India, while MacBooks may be made in Thailand. At least some of them. “The main non-China production site for MacBook in the future may be Thailand,” according to Ming-Chi Kuo, who adds that — right now — all MacBooks are made in China.

Where does that lead us? In the next three-to-five years, the analyst says:

…at least the US market (~25-30%+ of global shipments) can be supplied by assembly sites located in non-China to reduce potential impacts from political risks (e.g., US-China tariffs).

Out past five-years, the thread says:

The non-Chinese markets will be supplied by assembly sites located in non-China, while the Chinese market will be supplied by assembly sites located in China.

He also says that assemblers in China and outside the Middle Kingdom will be able to handle new product introduction. That folds nicely into his thinking that China and India will be able to start production of future iPhones at the same time.

Economic Times: Apple May Activate 5G for iPhone in India by Year’s End

It seems that Apple may turn on 5G for iPhone in India, soon. A piece from that country’s Economic Times says: 

Senior executives from Apple and Bharti Airtel will meet this week to discuss [a] rollout timeline for software updates to 5G-capable iPhones so that they support the Indian telco’s 5G network…

So say secret people said to know something about something. Assuming it pans out, there will be no new iPhone required. Units going back to 2020’s iPhone 12 are 5G capable. They just need a software update. Well… that and a decent amount of testing by Apple. Economic Times thinks the switch could be flipped sometime in December, “after testing and validating the devices” on the country’s 5G networks. 

Australian Apple Retail Workers Plan One-Hour Strike

Apple retail employees down under look set to send a short, but potentially powerful message. The Mac Observer highlights a Reuters report that says a number of Apple Store employees in Australia “are staging a strike due to the lack of progress on wage negotiations.”  

Potentially powerful, though — again — it’ll be a short message. The piece says the action is scheduled for 18 October, with the worker walk out planned to last for one hour. 

Apple Developers Get More OS Betas

The Big Bam Beta parade rolls on. A couple of pieces from AppleInsider say developers got hot newness on Tuesday. One says members of the Apple Developer Program got access to fifth betas of iOS and tvOS 16.1, as well as a sixth beta of iPadOS 16.1. Meanwhile, a second piece from the site says developers were seeded an eleventh beta of macOS 13 Ventura.

While OS betas never really stop, the latest round should hear a crescendo, soon. The 16.1 updates are expected to hit sometime this month. It seems likely that the Ventura release will hit about the same time.

Ask Apple: A New, One-on-One Resource for Developers

It wasn’t just a new round of betas developers picked up on Tuesday. They also got a new resource. MacRumors says Apple has introduced a new feature for dev-types called “Ask Apple.” The piece says the program will give developers access to “Apple engineers and experts,” letting them quiz the pros on such topics as “implementing new beta features, updates introduced at WWDC, adopting Dynamic Island, swapping to SwiftUI, and more.”

Susan Prescott, Apple’s VP of Worldwide Developer Relations and Enterprise and Education Marketing says “Ask Apple” is meant to address an increased appetite among developers “for one-on-one support and conversation with Apple experts…”

The program is free — as long as you’re already paying. MacRumors says registration is “available to all members of the Apple Developer Program and the Apple Developer Enterprise Program.” More info is available on Apple’s developer site.

Peanuts Holiday Specials Will Stream for Free on Apple TV+, Will Not Hit PBS

And finally today — Fire up the rage cannon: The Charlie Brown holiday specials will not be on PBS this year. A couple of years ago, Apple TV+ picked up the exclusive rights to a lot of the Peanuts catalog. That included a deal to bankroll new series and specials as well as play host to old shows like “It’s the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown,” “A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving,” and “A Charlie Brown Christmas.” And there was much wailing and gnashing of teeth because people didn’t want to pay $4.99 a month to watch these show’s that they’d watched for years for free, or — really — without realizing they were paying for them. 

So, Apple cut a deal to show the Thanksgiving and Christmas specials on PBS. And now, that deal is done. 9to5Mac says the Cupertino-streamer is exercising the exclusive part of its exclusivity pact. And yet, you still don’t have to pay to see them. According to the report, “Apple will stream [the shows] for free for everyone — no subscription needed — for a limited time…” 9to5Mac says:

“A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving” will stream for free November 23 through November 27, and “A Charlie Brown Christmas” follows from December 22 through December 25.

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