Today Morgan Stanley published the results of its AlphaWise Trackers, which show that the demand for the iPhone is estimated at around 53 million units for the June quarter, with strong interest coming from China.
Supply chain estimates from Asia also reveal that Apple planned to build about 54 million iPhones in the quarter. It looks looks like Apple is aiming to build some channel inventory with excess units, as the company ended the March quarter at the low end of their 5-7 week typical range.
iPhone demand solid, watch remains stable
As far as the Apple Watch goes, Morgan Stanley found that demand for the smartwatch is stable at a level 20% higher than the first-generation iPhone was 6 weeks after launch. The AlphaWise survey compiles its data using web search analysis.
“Watch interest in the week of launch was about half that for the first iPhone, but the Watch has seen a much smaller deceleration since the initial spike”, said Morgan Stanley. “Both products had limited distribution at the beginning — iPhone at AT&T and Watch on the Apple online store — but the Watch has seen more supply constraints due to some component issues and we believe likely conservative demand forecasts by Apple“.
As far as the iPhone 6s launch is concerned, Morgan Stanley said that Asian suppliers have said the build plans are roughly flat year over year compared with the iPhone 6. But the company believes there may be huge demand for a cheaper iPhone 6, assuming that it will move to a $99 on-contract price when the new model launches in September.
Investors though are cautious about the iPhone 6s product cycle, as most on Wall Street don’t seem to believe that Apple will be able to grow unit sales much more over the iPhone 6 in 2016.
“While we anticipate iPhone growth will decelerate from (fiscal year 2015) and it could take some time for users and developers to find more compelling use cases for the Watch, our surveys and trackers have consistently showed stronger than expected demand for both products over the next few quarters”, said Morgan Stanley.