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Apple Looking to Have Record iPhone Quarter: Report

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According to information gathered from parts suppliers for Apple’s (s aapl) iPhone 3GS, the handset is headed for a record quarter. Apple’s Taiwanese suppliers for the iPhone’s components have reported a 31 percent increase in volume of orders placed for the parts, which should indicate a very healthy spike in sales of the smartphone.

The report comes via Taiwan’s online tech industry publication, the DigiTimes, which has provided ample fuel for the rumor fire regarding various Apple devices in the past, as well as reporting on Apple’s business outlook. In the second quarter, the iPhone sold 7.4 million worldwide, but if DigiTimes’ information is accurate, total sales for the third quarter, which end in December for the Mac maker, could reach the 10 million mark.

Numbers are up all across the smartphone component supply industry, but according to information gathered by the Taipei-based market Intelligence & Consulting Institute (MIC), much of that increase is due to Apple’s strong sales. Which isn’t to say that Apple’s competitors aren’t having any luck challenging its market dominance, according to MIC analyst Edward Lin:

Samsung is currently the largest supplier in the market, as it supplies for the Apple iPhone series models. However, TI (s txn), which has exited from the baseband business and now focuses on AP development, has rolled out the OMAP 3430 series, which adopts the Cortex A8 architecture and features a clock speed of 1GHz. This offers processor options other than Qualcomm (s qcom), enabling terminal vendors to pair together different communications systems, and it has been well received by many brand-name vendors, such as HTC, Palm (s palm), etc. As a result, TI’s share in the Taiwanese smartphone AP market increased in the third quarter of 2009.

The ability to use different wireless communication standards is something that’s recently come up in rumors surrounding Apple’s next-generation device, and it looks like that rumor is well in keeping with the pulse of the industry at large. Perhaps it isn’t so far-fetched to imagine that the next iPhone could use both GSM- and CDMA-based networks, allowing it to be offered on Verizon (s vz) in the U.S. Of course, then some of Apple’s commercials would become factually incorrect.

Regardless of what’s coming, third-quarter sales of 10 million is a huge win for Cupertino. Looking at recent developments, its easy to spot the source of this late-game success. Apple has opened up sales of its device to many more carriers at the international level, expanding into new territory in the UK, Canada and France, to name a few. It’s also finally gained official access to the massive Chinese market, which paves the way for a lot of potential success, despite early setbacks.

7 Responses to “Apple Looking to Have Record iPhone Quarter: Report”

  1. space guru

    News of Google bringing their own phone to the market is pretty big. Of course market experts are saying that no one can challenge Apple but I remember them saying the same thing about Toyota back in the 60’s. And that was after Toyota hit the front page of Consumer Reports as the Import Car of the Year! That makes me think back when Eric Schmidt was on Apple’s Board of Director’s. I’ve always had a feeling that Eric was picking Steve Job’s brain. Google’s involvement now with an actual phone and their expertise on the World Wide Web search engine and such not to mention Amazon’s Kindle and furthermore Apple’s recent purchase of Lala making this tech sector play with a new set of rules. And this is huge for our economy! Now America will somehow have to steer their children towards math and science. The reason is pretty obvious.

  2. Joe Anonymous

    “You probably don’t remember, but back in 2008, Gene Munster insisted that iPhone sales would likely reach sales of 45 million units in 2009, so based on those expectations, a 10 million iPhone quarter barely qualifies as adequate. The 7.4 million iPhone quarter really didn’t impress many investors because RIM moved more total BlackBerry units than Apple.”

    What a bunch of bizarre ‘logic’.

    First, why should Apple be measured by some analyst’s fantasies? 10 million iPhones this quarter would be huge – and well above Apple’s guidance.

    Second, there’s a HUGE difference between 7.4 M and 10 M phones. Apple makes something like $500 per phone. That difference is well over $1 BILLION dollars in revenue (probably at least $300-400 million in net income. Anyone who ignores that difference is a fool.

    I really love the one about RIM moving more total Blackberry units than Apple. I guess Toyota’s Camry is a total failure because Honda moved more cars total than Toyota’s Camry sales. Geez.

    Your complaints about China are off-base, too. If you did a little searching, you’d see that there were 3-5 million black market iPhones in China at the time of the iPhone launch, so it’s not surprising that many of the early adopters had already gotten their phones, resulting in depressed sales figures.

    Finally, the argument that investors only care about market share is completely contrary to everything that the last 10 years had taught investors (or, at least, smart investors).

    Apple’s market share is a tiny fraction of Dell’s (or Microsoft’s, for that matter). Whose stock has done better for the past decade? Only intensely stupid investors would make their decisions solely on the basis of market share or would advocate flooding the market with millions of phones being sold at a loss in order to gain market share. Hint: once you get the public used to buying cheap stuff from you, it’s almost impossible to get the prices back to a profitable level. Ask the entire PC industry (other than Apple). Heck, with under 10% market share, some reports have Apple hearing 1/3 to 1/2 of the entire industry’s profits. Why in the world would they throw that kind of pricing power away?

  3. iphonerulez

    When it comes to sales expectations, analysts set the bar very high for Apple. Neither the Pre or the Droid can come close (no single smartphone can), but I think they’re comparing Apple’s iPhone to the whole RIM BlackBerry lineup in terms of sales.

    You probably don’t remember, but back in 2008, Gene Munster insisted that iPhone sales would likely reach sales of 45 million units in 2009, so based on those expectations, a 10 million iPhone quarter barely qualifies as adequate. The 7.4 million iPhone quarter really didn’t impress many investors because RIM moved more total BlackBerry units than Apple.

    I’m curious to see if a 10 million plus iPhone quarter will move the stock upwards to any degree more than a 7.4 million iPhone quarter. I kind of doubt it.

    I still believe analysts and investors are only impressed with outright market share. Move millions and millions of units even if you have to give them away. Apple’s cash reserve increases quarter after quarter, but the stock price doesn’t reflect that gain over the past couple of years. (That is if you disregard that unwarranted drop to $80 last year.)

    I’d hoped that initial iPhone sales had been better in China. I was really counting on that the boost share price, but that’s a lost cause now. I’m happy to see the iPhone doing well in Korea, the land of supposedly picky smartphone users.

  4. Apple is currently in their first fiscal quarter of 2010… not their third quarter. Getting facts as simple as that wrong makes the balance of info you provide in the article questionable.