Apple stock is taking a hit in pre-market off a report from Nikkei that Apple’s orders for new iPhones are down about 20% compared to last year.
The report claims that iPhone 8, iPhone 8 Plus and iPhone X orders topped 100 million. This year, orders for the new 5.8-inch iPhone X successor, 6.5-inch ‘iPhone X Plus’ and cheaper 6.1-inch LCD iPhone, are in the 80 million range according to this report.
Especially in the first quarter of this year, investor sentiment turned sour as several sources — including Nikkei coverage — said that sales of iPhone X were low. These reports didn’t really pan out for the most part, with iPhone X being the most popular iPhone model sold every week since its introduction.
This is to say that these supply chain reports are not always accurate. Whilst Apple will not comment on individual reports, Tim Cook has previously said not to rely on isolated supply chain commentary as a reliable signal, as Apple’s supply chain is intricate and there are always many factors at play.
That being said, some segment of investors clearly respect publications like Nikkei as their reports always move the markets. Apple stock was touching all-time highs yesterday, but is down about 2% in current pre-market trading.
In light of the delayed launch of iPhone X last year, Apple has told suppliers of the two new OLED models to prepare earlier according to the Nikkei report. Interestingly, the 6.1-inch LCD model is apparently the SKU currently behind schedule. It says that components for the OLED 2018 iPhones will be sent to assembly at Foxconn and Pegatron in July, whereas LCD model parts will follow a month later. All three iPhone models are expected to debut in September.
To recap the current rumors, Apple is expected to debut three new flagship iPhones in the fall. All three devices will share design traits with the iPhone X, featuring a notch screen and TrueDepth camera sensors for Face ID. The new 5.8-inch iPhone X will likely focus on better cameras and faster internal components.
The 6.5-inch model, dubbed iPhone X Plus, brings the slim bezel design to the larger form factor, featuring a 6.5-inch display in the same physical chassis as the current iPhone 8 Plus.
The 6.1-inch iPhone will use LCD display technology, not OLED, so its bezels may not be as thin as the iPhone X’s but will be greatly reduced compared to the current forehead and chin iPhone 8 design. By using some cheaper components like an aluminum frame and LCD display, this 6.1-inch model will be the cheapest iPhone in the 2018 lineup.
It is expected to cost around $700, allowing it to replace the current iPhone 8. Some analysts believe the 5.8-inch iPhone X will see a $100 price cut from $999 to $899, enabling the the 6.5-inch iPhone X to start at the $999 price point.