iPhone 12 5G crosses 100 million sales and matches iPhone 6 supercycle

iPhone 12 5G crosses 100 million sale and matches iPhone 6 supercycle
The iPhone 12 series kickstarted a huge iPhone upgrade supercycle for Apple that’s expected to continue beyond 2021 and a new report sheds even more light on the iPhone 12 line’s performance thus far.

The iPhone 12 5G is experiencing the first supercycle since the iPhone 6

Counterpoint Research reports that cumulative iPhone 12 series shipments reached 100 million units in April 2021, solidifying Apple’s position as the world’s largest smartphone manufacturer by revenue — Samsung is still the leader by volume.

The sales milestone was crossed within seven months of launch, which is two months earlier than the iPhone 11 series. That’s quite an impressive achievement when you consider the impact COVID-19 had on Apple’s release plans.

More impressive, however, is the fact that iPhone 12 5G demand is so far on par with that of the iPhone 6 series. The latter launched in late 2014 and is largely seen as the first truly mainstream iPhone lineup.
Demand for the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus was so strong because Apple finally adopted larger displays — 4.7-inch and 5.5-inch panels — after years of limiting its devices to small 3.5-inch and 4-inch screens.

With the iPhone 12 5G, the addition of 5G connectivity is understood to be the main driving force behind sales, though the redesign Apple introduced coupled with the switch to OLED across the full lineup is bound to have played a role too.

There's a clear trend towards bigger, more expensive iPhone 12 models

Breaking down current demand by model and size, it seems that customers are showing a clear preference towards the biggest and most expensive iPhone 12 models, which explains the iPhone 12 mini’s poor performance.

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Counterpoint Research reports that Apple’s iPhone 12 Pro Max has so far accounted for 29% of all iPhone 12 shipments. To compare, the iPhone 11 Pro Max held a share of 25% during its launch cycle.

This trend is particularly noticeable in the United States, where Apple has sold around 40% of global iPhone 12 Pro Max units since the $1,099 model’s launch in mid-November.

These numbers are obviously fantastic news for Apple. They have created what Counterpoint Research is calling a “revenue supercycle” — the iPhone 12 grossed 22% more revenue in its first seven months of sales than the iPhone 11 lineup.

How will Apple adapt its iPhone lineup to reflect these trends?

The news about the iPhone 12’s latest sales milestone comes just one day after the 14th anniversary of the original iPhone's launch. Apple isn’t planning any major shake-ups for its upcoming 14th generation of devices, but it has got some big plans for the 15th anniversary in 2022.

Rumor has it that Apple will kill off the mini-sized iPhone in 2022 and introduce a more affordable 6.7-inch iPhone 14 Max. The move should please customers who are looking for a larger iPhone without being required to spend $1,099.

The iPhone 12 mini form factor could return further down the road in the form of a future iPhone SE, but that’s purely speculation at this stage. As things stand, Apple’s iPhone SE plans include a 5G version in 2022 and a future iPhone SE Plus based on the iPhone XR or iPhone 11.

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