Strength for iPhones, a Diversified Supply Chain, and AFC Richmond Takes the Virtual Pitch

The Daily Observations

Today from the Observation Deck, we’ve got Evercore excited about Apple’s growing market prospects. AFC Richmond is appearing on the virtual pitch, and Apple’s further diversifying its supply chain. Be sure to check out today’s Daily Observations podcast too, where you can hear when I and Nick deCourville think about Fall Detection and Crash Detection.

Evercore Ups Apple Target on Strength of iPhone, Wearables, and Services

While most analysts seem excited about the level of iPhone 14 Pro orders, none have seen fit to adjust their targets on Apple shares. None, that is, except Evercore analyst Amit Daryanani. Apple 3.0 ran part of a note he wrote earlier this week, wherein he raised his target on Apple shares by five-bucks. 

He has noticed what other analysts have noticed, the higher the number of Pro phones Apple sells, the more money Apple makes. Running through a few points pointed out:

  • iPhone 14 Pro Max demand is at 33% this year, up from 14% last year for its 13 Pro Max predecessor
  • Across both Pro models, this year’s demand is at 56%, up from last year’s 41%
  • More people seem to be opting for higher memory capacities, with the average moving from 263GB last year to 286GB today (don’t ask me how)
  • This year’s ASPs are up about 10% in Daryanani’s estimation
  • Intent to buy is up on Apple wearables — 71% now versus 67% this time a year ago
  • Adoption for Apple Pay has grown to 48% today versus last year’s 43% 
  • AppleCare is also on the upswing with today’s adoption at 48% versus last year’s 40%

All that and did he mention iPhone? Demand for the Pro end of the iPhone 14 line is so strong, he’s expecting “upside vs. street expectations for Sept-qtr,” and probably the December-quarter as well.

Mr. Daryanani has an “Outperform” rating on Apple shares. He used this week’s note to up his price target on the shares from $185 to $190. 

JP Morgan: Significant Apple Production to Move to India and Vietnam by 2025

Apple plans to diversify its supply chain seem to be gearing up. TechCrunch has word of a new note from JP Morgan, that has the Cupertino-company increasing production in India and Vietnam. Worth noting: The note is not from the analyst who usually follows Apple for JP Morgan. A piece from Apple 3.0 says the note comes not from Samik Chatterjee, but from Gokul Hariharan. His LinkedIn profile has him operating out of the firm’s Hong Kong office. 

All of that stated, here’s what he hears, according to TechCrunch:

  • “…Apple will move 5% of global iPhone 14 production to India by late 2022…” That’ll grow to 25% of all iPhones by 2025.
  • While nothing’s as big as iPhone right now, Vietnam is getting bigger pieces of smaller segments. The report says that’ll include 65% of all AirPod production, 20% of all iPad production, 20% of all Apple Watch production, and 5% of all MacBook production by 2025. 

The analyst says the growing presence of Apple manufacturing partners Foxconn and Wistron in India, “ample labor resources and competitive labor costs,” all make India look good for Apple manufacturing. You’ve got to figure that being less reliant on China and selling straight to Indian consumers have to be bennies as well. 

 Apple Talking with Retail Unions in Australia

Apple’s dealings with retail unions have crossed an ocean. AppleInsider says the Cupertino-company has agreed to negotiate with store unions in Australia — this after unions down under asked the Australia’s Fair Work Commission to step in.

According to the report, Apple has proposed:

  • A minimum rate of pay 17% above the award rate outside of weekend penalty rates 
  • Higher pay after 8:00 PM local time, versus the current 10:00 PM rate increase
  • Wage increases of 2.8% in 2023 followed by a 2.6% in 2024 and 2025

AppleInsider says “Unions want Apple staff to have at least one weekend off per month, and two consecutive days off when they work weekends.” It’s unclear though whether that is something Apple has offered or simply another ask. 

While this may sound like progress, it seems far from a done deal. The report has one union exec chastising Apple for dragging its heels until the government got involved. He’s also not turned on by Apple coming in with what look like hard offers, rather than talking to employees about what they want. 

No word in the piece on next steps in the process.

Apple Seeds New Builds of iOS 16.1 and macOS Ventura to Public Testers

Public testers are getting in on this week’s Apple beta software fun. I told you earlier this week that developers had been seeded new builds of iOS, iPadOS, watchOS, tvOS, and macOS. While Apple’s public testing program hasn’t nabbed quite that much, a piece from MacRumors says that group does have access now to a second public beta of iOS 16.1. A separate report from MacRumors says public testers also got access to a sixth build of macOS 13 Ventura. 

“I know where I’m going…” 

We expect betas to fix problems in software. It’s still kind of funny when betas fix problems in betas. Last week, we got word that the first developer beta of iOS 16.1 was breaking GPS on some of the iPhone 14 Pro and Pro Max units on which it was installed. I’m not sure whether developers had gotten a fix of their own, but yet another piece from MacRumors says yesterday’s iOS beta for the public testing program does fix that issue.

If you’re in the public beta program, you know what to do. If you’re not but wish you were, the cutting edge awaits at beta.apple.com. 

YouTuber TechRax Tests Crash Detection on iPhone 14 Pro

Sometimes you realize why everything should come with the warning, “Don’t Try This at Home.” Nick deCourville over at The Mac Observer has written up a new YouTube video, wherein a guy tests Apple’s new Crash Detection safety feature — by crashing a car with an iPhone in it.

Seriously — don’t try this at home. 

In fairness, the guy seems to know what he’s doing. The TMO piece says:

gadget-smasher TechRax published a video showcasing his team remotely-controlling a driverless car that contains a new iPhone 14 Pro strapped to the headrest of the driver’s seat. Using this setup, the team attempts to crash the car into a stationary vehicle.

Spoiler: They succeed. Eventually. Once they managed what the piece refers to as a “fender bender,” Crash Detection worked. “After a short delay,” the piece says, the feature activated automatically. It began the countdown, though the team deactivated it before emergency services were called. The team then crashed the car into a wall at a higher speed and — yes — Crash Detection worked again, with the team stopping the countdown before an emergency call went out.

The devilish part of me wants to point out that, while we now know an iPhone with Crash Detection will detect a crash, we don’t know that it can actually call emergency services after a crash.

Seriously though — don’t try this at home.

Crash Detection is baked into Apple’s latest hardware/software combo. The on/off toggle can be found in Settings. It’s turned on by default in all of this year’s iPhone 14 models, Apple Watch Ultra, Apple Watch Series 8, and the second generation Apple Watch SE.  

Oh. And you can catch the TechRax video on YouTube. 

Really, truly, seriously though — don’t try this at home. 

Apple TV+ Outs Season-Two Trailer for Kids Series “Wolfboy and the Everything Factory”

The Joseph Gordon-Levitt kids’ show “Wolfboy and the Everything Factory” is on its way back for a second season, and Apple TV+ has put out a trailer for it. The Cupertino-streamer issued a press release Wednesday promoting the series return next week. According to the release, the “animated epic takes Wolfboy (…) to a new realm underneath the Everything Factory where Nyx attempts to lure him to the dark side.”

I’m guessing Nyx is the heavy. I’m also willing to bet that Wolfboy doesn’t turn to the dark side, but I’ve lost bets in the past. 

Season one of the show is available to stream now on Apple TV+. Season two hits next Friday 30 September. Between now and then, you can catch the trailer on YouTube.

Ted Lasso’s AFC Richmond Headed to EA’s FIFA 23

And finally today — you know how Ted Lasso’s Richmond AFC isn’t a real football club? Well the line’s getting just a little blurry. AppleInsider says the fictitious team will take the pitch in the Electronic Arts game FIFA 23. That is a playable team with such playable players as Jamie Tartt, Dani Rojas, Sam Obisanya, Roy Kent, and Isaac McAdoo.

According to the report:

Players can choose Ted Lasso as a playable manager in Career Mode or manage AFC Richmond by swapping them into the Premier League or any other playable Career Mode league.

AFC Richmond will be playable across Career Mode, Kick-Off, Online Friendlies, and Online Seasons, including The Greyhounds’ Nelson Road home stadium.

In FIFA 23 Ultimate Team, players will have customization items such as authentic kits and [can] select Ted Lasso or Coach Beard as a club manager. Additionally, all AFC Richmond content will be available through objectives and challenges.

I assume all of that speaks to a level of realism since — to me — it sounds just as confusing as … football. 

The team will take the virtual fields next Friday 30 September. They’ll be available on PlayStation 4 or later, Xbox One or later, PC, and Google Stadia. Ironically, Team Lasso will not be playable natively on Apple operating systems.

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