Apple Calendar Q418 iPhone Shipments Expected too Fall Below 75m
November 19, 2018
Expected iPhone shipments continueto decline given speculation those less than stellar early sales of the iPhone XR, and Apple’s end to reporting unit volumes for the iPhone, Mac, and iPad. Apple customers are still a bit wary of what they will get when they purchase any of the three newest iPhone models given their price, and more than expected have decided to go with previous models, particularly the iPhone 8 series (8/8+), although the iPhone XR with a bigger screen and only a $50 premium to the iPhone 8+ seems to be a better value. The following table indicates the relative screen size and price as compared to the iPhone 7. Anecdotal conversations with store personnel at a number of T-Mobile (TMUS) and AT&Tstores, indicate most model decisions are based on the look of the phone relative to cost.
Table 1: iPhone Model Comparison
Source: SCMR LLC, T-Mobile, and AT&T
Apple’s calendar 4Q iPhone unit volumes are forecast in the 70m to 75m range, the make-up could be less weighted toward the iPhone X series (X, XS, XR, XS Max) than originally expected. The OLED displays currently used in the iPhone X/XS/Max are superior to the LCD displays used in the XR and older models, however consumers expect most high-end smartphones to have OLED displays, and Apple’s late entry into that market obviates LCD displays unless cost is a mitigating factor. The premiums attached to models using OLED displays include a variety of other features, some of which should see price decreases in 2019, as will the OLED displays, putting Apple in the ‘me too’ position as opposed to its traditional leadership status, especially since Huawei, Xiaomi, LG and Samsung’s arereleasing foldable form factors. Apple has historically been known as a ‘design’ company, setting the pace for other CE companies to follow. The next table shows Q318 smartphone shipment results.
Table 2: Q318 OEM Smartphone Shipments, Share and Y/Y Change
Source: SCMR LLC, various
Huawei, up 36.6% Y/Y, was for the 2ndquarter in a row the #2 supplier, pushing Apple to the #3 position. Samsung and LG were the poorest performers, down 8.5% and 24.6%, respectively. Xiaomi also had a solid quarter up 16.8% and remained the #5 supplier.
Table 3: Q318 Regional Smartphone Shipments, Share and Y/Y Change
Source: SCMR, LLC, OLED-A