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Poor iPhone XR demand forces experts to slash iPhone sales estimates

17 December 2018 4

Seasoned Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo has claimed that iPhone XR’s demand has been lower than expected. He has even slashed the forecasted number of iPhone shipments by a hefty 20 percent for the first quarter of 2019. He had earlier estimated a shipment of 47-52 million iPhones which he has reduced to 38-42 million units in the first quarter of 2019.

We have reduced our 1Q19 iPhone shipment estimation by 20% to 38–42mn units (vs. our previous forecast of 47–52mn): We cut the 1Q19 iPhone shipment estimation again for the following reasons. (1) Lower-than-expected XR demand. We have reduced our 1Q19 XR shipment estimation to 15–20mn units vs. our previous forecast of 20–25mn units. (2) The increase in orders of legacy iPhone models cannot offset the decline of XR and XS series shipments because of the low season impact, says Kuo in a research note with TF International Securities.

Note that Kuo’s report is based on a calendar quarterly period while Apple’s financial reports are based on the fiscal quarter. So Apple’s Q1 2019 earning would represent the holiday period of October-December. Kuo’s prediction of 20% lesser shipments would represent Apple’s Q1 2019 earnings.

Kuo also forecasts 5-10% decline in the overall shipments in 2019 with approximately 188-194 million iPhone shipments compared to 210 million units for 2018. These numbers do not sound good for Apple and paint a pessimistic picture however since Apple has decided not to disclose the number of units sold we may have to go by these only for the moment.

iPhone XR promotion on Apple's website

The report also talks about the increase in the sales of older generation iPhones like iPhone 7 and iPhone 8, however, this still cannot offset the predicted weak sales of the current generation phones like the iPhone XS or XR during the holiday season. Apple’s aggressive marketing of iPhone XS and XR in the recent few weeks also hint towards weak sales.

Talking specifically about the iPhone XR, Kuo had earlier forecasted a shipment of around 20-25 million units for Q1 2019, which has now been revised to 15-20 million units.

Kuo is not the only analyst to have predicted the decrease in shipments of iPhone in recent times. Many factors like the recent slowdown in the smartphone industry, iPhone saturation, and current ongoing US-China trade conflicts may be a few reasons which may have a telling effect on these numbers.

  • The Apple iPhone XR isn't still available online. To be notified when it becomse available click here.
  • The Apple iPhone XS isn't still available online. To be notified when it becomse available click here.
  • The Apple iPhone 8 isn't still available online. To be notified when it becomse available click here.
  • The Apple iPhone 7 isn't still available online. To be notified when it becomse available click here.

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Poor iPhone XR demand forces experts to slash iPhone sales estimates
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