China's 2-million iPhone 5 launch: What a analysts say
Record first-weekend sales advise a clever Chinese New Year for Apple
FORTUNE — On Friday, UBS’s Steven Milunovich wrote that “some of [his] Chinese sources do not design a iPhone 5 to do as good as a iPhone 4S.” Two days later, Citigroup’s Glen Yeung wrote that reports of supply-chain sequence cuts “bring into doubt a strength of iPhone 5.”
That was before Apple (AAPL) announced that it sole some-more than 2 million iPhone 5s in mainland China final weekend, beating its prior Chinese iPhone releases — including the iPhone 4S that triggered launch-day riots final January.
On Monday, a analysts who cover a association were singing a opposite tune. Excerpts from their records to clients below:
Topeka’s Brian White: China Can’t Shake Apple Fever as We Approach a Year of a Snake. “Recall, Apple launched a iPhone 5 in China on Friday (12/14) and given a muted lines, there was flourishing regard around direct for this new iPhone. Clearly, this perspective incited out to be improper as this represents a large imitation for Apple and a initial time a Company ever released a post-launch press recover for iPhone sales in China. With a Chinese New Year commencement on Feb 10 and selling deteriorate starting in January, Apple has a dual hottest products (i.e., iPhone 5 and iPad mini) in a universe accessible for a Chinese consumers… We have formerly indicated that we approaching a large uptick in China direct with a iPhone 5 as we trust both iPhone 4 and iPhone 4S owners will upgrade. The clever iPhone 5 sales this weekend support a view. The pivotal reason is status. In a view, a new form cause shows a universe that we have a latest and biggest iPhone, a pointer of standing in China.”
ISI’s Brian Marshall: Quick thoughts. “We perspective this as a really clever launch, quite in light of a comparatively singular 3G subscriber bottom in China. For comparison, remember AAPL had sole over 5mil iPhone 5 units in a weekend of a launch in a U.S. and 8 other grown markets. We guess ~2mil iPhone 5 units were sole during U.S. carriers (T, VZ, S) in a initial 10 days of launch or ~1.0% invasion of a post-paid subscriber bottom of ~200mil. In a shorter time camber of only 3 days, AAPL sole over 2mil units during China Unicom and China Telecom, or ~1.5% invasion of a ~130mil 3G subscriber base. In a view, this suggests intensity for subscriber invasion in China could be identical to that of grown countries notwithstanding per capita GDP that is reduction than 1/5 of a U.S.”
Asymco’s Horace Dediu: Calibrating launch opening for a iPhone 5 in China. “This is, as distant as we know, a initial weekend sales information for a singular marketplace outward of a US. The time camber was 3 days and therefore a daily sales rate was 2/3 million per day. The following draft compares a launch opening for a launches that Apple reported:
More as they come in.