According to one analyst, the iPhone 5, much like a fine watch, has the quality and build to impress consumers in a world filled with cheaply made smartphones.
Gene Munster with Piper Jaffray said while the iPhone 5 is like a Rolex, many competing phones “feel more like cheaper Timex-brand watches. He questioned why someone would buy a Timex when they can have a Rolex for the same price.
Munster says he believes Apple will sell from 6 to 10 million iPhone 5 handsets in the September quarter, which concludes just over a week after the device goes on sale in 9 countries, including the U.S. He sees total iPhone sales hitting 49 million in Apple’s December quarter.
The analyst dismissed the mixed opinions he’d heard in what he referred to as the tech “media bubble”, saying he had spent time with the iPhone 5 himself, and he believes that customers will be pleasantly surprised.
He said in particular he finds the feel and build of the iPhone 5 beyond that of any previous iPhone. He also says the weight difference between the iPhone 5 and the iPhone 4S is “meaningful,” and says many users will immediately notice the difference.
Piper Jaffray also tracked online consumer sentiment surrounding the iPhone 5, and found that Twitter posts about the iPhone 5 were up 460 percent year-over-year compared to the day Apple announced the iPhone 4S. Jaffray said, “73% of tweets about the iPhone 5 during launch day were positive compared to 51% for the iPhone 4S launch. We believe this is to be expected given the phone is redesigned while the iPhone 4S was not.”