Analysts had long predicted that the launch of the iPhone X will lead to a supercycle of iPhone sales that will see Apple sell a record number of handsets. However, KGI Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo believes that the said supercycle won’t occur until 2018 when Apple unveils its new iPhone lineup.
He reasons that Apple won’t be able to address the TrueDepth camera shortage until the fall of 2018. Due to this, the iPhone X is expected to remain in short supply for months after its availability. The long wait times will likely end up forcing many customers to look elsewhere.
Additionally, Kuo believes that the 2018 iPhone models will enjoy a longer sales period which along with their new design, product mix, and specifications will make them more competitive and attractive to buyers. Thus, the analyst predicts Apple will ship 210-220 million iPhones in 2017, while in 2018, the company should ship anywhere between 245-255 million units.
Apple has been forced to launch the iPhone X later than usual due to production issues with the TrueDepth camera. Even after the delayed launch, the production issues of the iPhone X is expected to last well into 2018. Additionally, the response to the iPhone 8 and iPhone 8 Plus have been lukewarm from the public due to their boring design. Thus, Kuo’s analysis of a delayed supercycle does seem to be spot on. With better availability and new designs, the 2018 iPhone lineup will likely tempt many customers to upgrade from their existing iPhones.
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