From a note to clients by analyst Samik Chatterjee that landed on my desktop Monday:
Recent surveys from Wave7 Research into US sales trends across various carriers in July 2021 continues to indicate that iPhone sales remain strong, despite the upcoming September iPhone launch, led by resilient demand for the iPhone 12 series as well as a better inventory position for Apple relative to Samsung and other Android OEMs.
Overall iPhone share did not fall in July, as the company side-stepped typical seasonality ahead of a September iPhone launch, led by the ongoing resilience of the iPhone 12 in combination with inventory issues for Samsung. While shortages of chipsets and other components continue to impact the supply of Samsung and other Android OEMs, Apple supply continues to be “decent”.
Out of the 42 carrier store reps interviewed, only 9 highlighted a slowdown in sales in July ahead of the launch and characterized it as only a “small slowdown”.
All four variants of the upcoming iPhone 13 series are expected to be launched in September, unlike the prior year with the iPhone 12 Series, with the sales ecosystem preparing for a 9/15 announcement, presales on 9/17, and a launch in stores on 9/24 for all four models.
Within the iPhone 12 series, iPhone 12 was the leading SKU in July followed by iPhone 12 Pro Max and iPhone 12 Pro, with iPhone 12 mini share remaining small but stable, which is consistent with the findings in the month of June.
According to store reps interviewed in July, the strong ongoing sales of the iPhone 12 series is partly driven by strong promotions for the models.
The iPhone 12 Pro Max is doing well mostly due to its size, but it also has a telephoto lens that the base iPhone 12 lacks. Store reps have also noted the larger phones are selling better due to Zoom usage.
Maintains Overweight rating and $180 price target.
My take: It’s going to be a hell of a year-end report.