Plus, iPhone 13 builds look 25% better than the iPhone 12’s did at this time last year, says analyst Daniel Ives.
From a note to clients that landed on my desktop Sunday:
Over the last few days our Wedbush TMT Team has conducted our iPhone Asia supply chain checks post the Chinese New Year. Coming off an historic December quarter for Cupertino which the company crushed iPhone expectations, the Street has been anticipating some modest cuts to iPhone forecasts for FY21 and reflected in the stock’s sell-off over the last month. To this point, our checks overall came in bullish yet again with only some tweaks to near-term builds and an initial build forecast for iPhone 13 which could be a “game changer” indicating the supercycle party in Cupertino is going well in FY22.
Asia iPhone 12 builds: For the March quarter we believe builds for total iPhones ticked down slightly over the last few weeks and are now in the 56 million to 62 million range vs. our prior checks in the 60 million to 70 million range. For the June quarter we believe initial builds have stayed basically unchanged and remain in the mid 40 million range. We have not seen a robust launch uptrend such as this in a number of years for Apple and the only iPhone trajectory similar would be the iPhone 6 in 2014 based on our analysis…
Initial Asia supply chain builds for iPhone 13 are currently in the ~100 million unit range compared to our initial iPhone 12 reads at 80 million units (pre-COVID) and represents a 25% increase YoY out of the gates. While this number will clearly move around over the coming months, we believe this speaks to an increased confidence with Cook & Co. that this 5G driven product cycle will extend well into 2022 and should also benefit from a post vaccine consumer “reopening environment”. From a spec perspective, we have increased confidence that iPhone 13 will have a 1 terabyte storage option which is double from the highest Pro storage capacity today (512GB) and will also include a number of enhancements with Lidar across all iPhone 13 models.
Maintains Outperform rating and Street-high $175 target (bull case: $225).
My take: Ives’ are the first estimates I’ve seen for the unannounced iPhone 13.