Missing iPhone 5c presale announcement causing Wall Street worries

By , Sep 17, 2013

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It doesn’t take much to spook investors. For instance, concern over Apple’s silence on iPhone 5c presale numbers prompted a 2.5 percent dip in the Cupertino, Calif. company’s stock Monday. At issue is whether a lack of a preorder announcement signals less demand for the inexpensive iPhone or supply problems for the flagship iPhone 5s.

Although Apple didn’t announce presale figures for the first iPhone, the iPhone 3G and the iPhone 3GS, starting with the iPhone 4 the company has issued a press release touting a newly-broken presale number. Is Apple just waiting until sales of the iPhone 5s (which isn’t available for preorder) launches to make an announcement for both iPhones?

One answer could come from China, where a carrier yesterday announced how many of the new iPhones have already been reserved…

Monday, China’s second-largest carrier China Unicom announced it has 100,000 online reservations for both the iPhone 5c and iPhone 5s. Just how you can reserve a smartphone that is not be pre-sold is unclear, but the figure provides the first hard numbers on demand for Apple’s new handsets.

What makes the announcement intriguing is the demand for reservations happened despite a lack of an iPhone sale by China Unicom and the carrier’s recent infatuation with Android. Still unknown is the impact number one carrier China Mobile will have on sales of the new iPhones.

After a courtship spanning years, Apple finally added the carrier and its 700 million customers to its list of global partners. But investors are still trying to read the tea leaves behind that missing press release.

Theory number one: the iPhone 5c won’t catch the eye of first-adopters, that group of consumer which lines up in front of Apple Stores to brag about owning the latest and greatest piece of technology.

Indeed, the New York Times has coined “Shownership” to describe the psychology behind first-adopters. The iPhone hasn’t changed drastically since the iPhone 4. Apple’s iPhone 5c is essentially just the iPhone 5 with a new choice of colorful plastic exteriors.

What’s important is having the newest product – and everyone around you knowing it, as well. The thinking was on display today when a group of Japanese iPhone fans camped out in front of the Tokyo Apple Store, risking a typhoon.

Also blamed for the dip in Apple stock: worry that there aren’t enough iPhone 5s unit to support Friday’s start of sales. In fact, among Apple conspiracy circles, such worry is seen as why the iPhone 5s is not available for preorder. However, in China the iPhone 5s can be preordered starting today – and most models are already sold out.

Some of the concern may be valid – we are seeing iPhone 5c shipping dates start to slip. Historically, the iPhone is such a hot product that it can be hard to keep them in stock. But should be worry?

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  • Joonyaboy

    I really hate the Wall Street game. Apple is selling a great product and all these murmurs are just noise

    • Jason Duong

      They do it on purpose to manipulate Apples stock to earn a profit. I hate analysts too.

    • iRaj

      Samsung paid them to murmur…

    • Ignacio Irigoyen

      This will benefit Apple in the end. They are in the process of buying back stocks, so the lower they get the better.

      Analyst play, but in the end Apple will laugh all the way to the bank

  • Sorn Sereyvibol

    Because IPhone 5C is not actually cheap as what million people expected

    • Jason Duong

      16GB iPhone 5c – $739 AUD
      16GB iPhone 5s – $869 AUD
      While the 16GB iPhone 5 was only $800 AUD.
      -If bought outright-
      Apple logic…

    • Joonyaboy

      Apple never said they were making a cheap phone. Rumors

      • Urzo

        Um.. yeah they did. What do you think the whole purpose of making this sideline iPhone is?

      • Joonyaboy

        Can you link me the press release where Apple said they were releasing a cheap phone? Tim Cook specifiaclly stated there wouldn’t be one

      • Urzo
      • quitcherbichinn

        wrong! please try again. nowhere in there did they say it was a cheap phone. nowhere did they say they were going to build a cheap phone. RUMORS said they were going to build a cheap phone. that is what happens when you make assumptions and believe rumors. YOU set yourself up to be disappointed…Apple did not do that, it’s not their fault.

      • Palmer Paul

        Your whole argument is stupid. What makes a company great (worth a lot of money) is when they follow a smart business plan, and in Apple’s case at least, when they release products that will increase their revenue. Who decides what a “smart business plan” is? Wall Street analysts, investors, and consumers make that decision. Now none of those people (except for possibly the investor if he/she holds an exorbitantly large share of the company) can FORCE Apple to follow the “smart business plan”, however they can vocalize what they believe is beneficial for their own assets and gains (and consequently, also beneficial for Apple’s gains). These realistic predictions are in a sense the blueprint that Apple should follow in order to increase their revenue and subsequently their net worth. By not following these so called “rumors” of a cheap iPhone, they are diverging from the blueprint for success, and therefore IT IS there fault for not creating a product that meets and surpasses the predictions and expectations for their impending product. Since it is there fault for not meeting people’s expectations (or as you call “rumors”), their stock price will suffer accordingly (and rightfully so). So even if Tim Cook (or any other representative of Apple for that matter) said that their wouldn’t be a cheap iPhone, the fact of the matter is that based on the consumers wants and demands, their SHOULD be a cheap iPhone (and thats all that matters).

      • quitcherbichinn

        LOL reading your shit is the biggest waste of my time today. the fact you believe the shit you just typed…priceless.

      • Urzo

        LOL. I refused to read that garbage.

  • kay appleseed

    who is shocked? coz i am not. i can sill deal with 5S but i cannot stand 5c. why would any one buy this coz put a 100 bucks more and you can get yourself an iPhone 5S. get ready apple, your stock has a way long distance(downwards) to travel ….

    • CryptoCoin420

      Yeah, I agree as I would not personally buy the iPhone 5c but my mom had the iPhone 4 and was due for an upgrade. She did not want to fork out an extra 100 dollars to get the 5s, as she does not care about the touch ID and slow motion recording. Not everyone has a $100 dollars extra to spend on a phone. All she has to pay for a 2 year contract for a 5c is $99.99 shipped. She will be happy with her phone, and she will probably put a case on it as you should since its a cheap way to protect your phone if you don’t buy aftermarket insurance. My wife on the other hand is upgrading her 4S to the 5s. To each their own. I have the iPhone 5 and I will hold out till they release the 6. If you don’t like the 5c don’t buy it, but don’t knock people that want the 5c. People have their reasons for doing what they are doing and if thats what they want to do, so be it.

    • Urzo

      They simply timed the iPhone 5C well. All the iPhone 4 and 4S users who are due an upgrade are going to upgrade to the 5C due to its cheaper cost than the 5S. But then again, those who don’t want a nastily cheap looking phone won’t.

  • TesticularFortitude

    You lost me at Wall Street.

  • Ted

    “The iPhone hasn’t changed drastically since the iPhone 4.”

    Really? Except for three generations of processors, three generations of the camera, an entirely new case, a different screen size, LTE, and on and on. What is the matter with you journalists?

    • Ted

      Not to mention Siri, a completely revamped OS, iCloud functionality. EVERYTHING has changed since the iPhone 4.

  • felixtaf

    Wonder Y.. They are always worried. Even the iPhone 5 sold in millions, they were worried. Now for this, they were worried. When their worry will end? Cunning & greedy people

  • n0ahcruz3

    Stock manipulation or not, it does not take away the fact that apple was silent about the preorder numbers. And we cant blame them. It only indicates low preorder numbers for the 5c.

  • JB

    with the advance of generations in terms of material & design. the iPhone has been multiplied before everyone’s eyes & now exists as two lines instead of one. not only that I believe it’s now cheaper to produce iPhone 5 generation compared to iPhone 4 generation. a downgrade in quality backed by the foundation of something spectacular in history none the less.

    lets say now apple have made it big. & this is how they plan to stay there. nothing new, but still nothing old.