From the good news/bad news news file: KGI analyst Ming-Chi Kuo has increased his 2016 sales estimates for the iPhone 7 lineup, but still doesn’t expect sales to surpass that of the iPhone 6s lineup’s 2015 numbers.
According to research provided to AppleInsider by KGI analyst Ming-Chi Kuo, the research firm has escalated its sales estimates from 65 million to between 70 million and 75 million, mostly because of the recall of the Samsung Galaxy Note 7 and the dual-camera feature in the iPhone 7 Plus.
Kuo says he believes “artificial scarcity” has led to reports of carrier sell-outs and strong consumer demand of the device, saying both factors are “not entirely due to market demand.” He says carrier promotions are inflating sales numbers, while a larger amount of launch countries has spread out the available stock, leading to depleted inventories.
Samsung’s recall of the Galaxy Note 7’s, spurred by a number of buyers’ experiences with the devices exploding due to faulty batteries, has pushed users to look for another brand of large-screen smartphone. Kuo also noted that the iPhone 7 Plus’s dual-camera feature has proved quite popular, aiding early shipments of the device.
Kuo also says low yields on the popular Jet Black iPhone 7 casings, which has a yield that is running around 60-70%, is another reason for the scarcity of the devices. KGI suggests Apple investors cash in and take their profits in the current near-term stock highs.
Jet Black has accounted for roughly 30% to 35% of pre-orders worldwide, says Kuo, while in China it accounted for 45% to 50% of pre-orders. The 128GB model has proven to be the most popular choice.
As for iPhone 7 vs. iPhone 7 Plus sales, Kuo indicates pre-order numbers of the iPhone 7 Plus and iPhone 7 were roughly equal, likely due to the issues with the Galaxy Note 7.
The numbers shouldn’t come as a big surprise to observers – although there will likely still be much wailing and gnashing of teeth in the media – as Apple itself has forecasted lower iPhone sales numbers than last year, as well as indicating there will be an earnings slowdown continuing this quarter.