NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- KGI Research analyst Ming-Chi Kuo predicts Apple (AAPL) will begin mass production of its much-rumored iWatch in November, potentially possibly pushing back the formal announcement of Apple's much anticipated next device.
According to his latest note Kuo says, "We have pushed back our estimated time of iWatch mass production from late-September to mid-to-late-November. We also lower our forecast of iWatch 2014 shipments by 40% to 3 million units. We believe developing the hardware and OS of iWatch will be a much more difficult task than for Apple's existing products."
Apple could not be reached for comment on the report.
Shares of Apple were higher in late Friday morning trade, gaining 0.36% to $95.38.
Kuo has had a solid track record when it comes to predicting future Apple products, as well as when they'll reach the marketplace. His recent predictions and details concerning Amazon's (AMZN) new smartphone were also quite accurate.
Though unconfirmed, Apple's wearable device is rumored to be coming in two models - a competitively-priced 'Sports' version, and a more expensive 'Designer' model with a larger 1.5-inch display. Kuo believes the new devices will be waterproof, have flexible AMOLED displays and feature sapphire displays. The devices are also expected to integrate iwith iOS devices, and incorporate biometric recognition, wireless charging and Near Field Communications (NFC).
In an April, Kuo discussed what Apple might be considering targeting buyers of super-luxury devices. "Fashion is the name of the game; most expensive model likely priced at several thousand US dollars," the analyst wrote in a note. "Referring to the rules of the fashion market, we predict the iWatch casing and band will come in various materials. The most expensive model of the iWatch line will carry a price tag of several thousand US dollars." Analysts are predicting anywhere from 5 million to 58 million in first-year unit sales for the iWatch. This would equal between $1.75 billion to $17 billion in added revenue, assuming the watch is priced between $250 and $350.
-- Written by Gary Krakow in New York.
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