Apple sold 29 million iPhone X
units during the holiday quarter, according to a report from analytical firm Canalys. That made the Apple iPhone X
the world's number one shipping smartphone model during the three month period from October to the end of December. While that sounds like good news for Apple and its tenth anniversary handset, Canalys analyst Ben Stanton notes that while the figure was impressive for a high priced device, it was below industry expectations. Last week, connected analyst Ming-Chi Kuo of KGI Securities said that he expects Apple to stop production of the iPhone X in the middle of this year
due to low sales.
According to Canalys, other iPhone models tallied high shipping totals in the quarter, such as the Apple iPhone SE
, Apple iPhone 6s
, Apple iPhone 7
and the Apple iPhone 8
. Older models, like the iPhone 6s
and the iPhone 7
, are being bought by those who feel that they have discovered value for the money paid. Canalys Analyst TuanAnh Nguyen said that for the fourth quarter, "Apple is looking at its best performance to date, all thanks to the massive changes it made to its portfolio in Q3."
Stanton does point out that the big $999 price tag for the 64GB iPhone X, combined with the split launch dates, were some of the reasons why iPhone X shipments failed to hit expectations during the fourth quarter. As Stanton mentions, iPhone X shipments were not the fastest ever for an iPhone.
The iPhone X performance is impressive for a device priced at US$999, but it is slightly below industry expectations. Apple struggled with supply issues in early November, but achieved a massive uplift in production in late November and throughout December. This helped it meet and even exceed demand in some markets by the end of the quarter. One major benefit to Apple is that customers are increasingly realizing the residual value of their old smartphones, opting for trade-in programs to offset the high price of the iPhone X. But that big price tag, and Apple’s split launch strategy, still had an impact, and shipments were not the fastest ever for an iPhone."-Ben Stanton, analyst, Canalys
"Apple is looking at its best performance to date, all thanks to the massive changes it made to its portfolio in Q3. This strategy has hedged Apple’s risk as it upgrades the iPhone, in both design and user experience. While new technologies, such as Face ID and bezel-less displays, help to justify the US$999 price tag and maintain competitiveness with Samsung, Huawei and Google, having a larger portfolio allows Apple to meet its overall shipment targets, and protect its market leadership in the premium segment."-TuanAnh Nguyen, analyst, Canalys
Apple is expected to report its fiscal first quarter earnings on February 1st. On that date, we should know how many iPhone units the company sold during the fourth calendar quarter. Whether Apple breaks out iPhone X sales separately won't be known until the earnings release is disseminated.