The latest versions of the iPhone were so popular that demand exceeds pre-order supply and "while a significant amount will be delivered to customers beginning on Friday and throughout September, many iPhone pre-orders are scheduled to be delivered in October," the tech company said in a release.
Apple announced its latest iPhone versions on Sept. 9, with pre-orders available on Sept. 12. Full rollout of the smartphone in the U.S. and 9 other countries will be available starting September 19. The two new models are available in a 4.7-inch and 5.5-inch Retina HD displays.
The iPhone 6 16 GB is available for $199 with a two-year contract and $299 for a 64 GB version. Apple is also launched a 128 GB version for $399 with contract. The iPhone 6 Plus is priced at $299 for the 16 GB model, $399 for the 64 GB model and $499 for the 128 GB model with a two-year contract.
Apple shares were rising 0.52% to $102.19 on Monday, as volume surged upwards of 28 million shares, slightly more than half the stock's three-month average daily trading volume. Here's what analysts were saying:
Brian White, Cantor Fitzgerald (Buy: $123 PT)
We believe Apple is in the midst of another "Super Cycle". Leading up to Apple's special event, there seemed to be a commonly held view amongst investors to take profits; however, we believe this is shortsighted and could prove costly. Similar to "super cycles" that began in 2001 (iPod), 2007 (iPhone) and 2010 (iPad), we believe Apple is in the midst of another "super cycle" that begins with the rapidly growing "phablet" market via the iPhone 6 Plus and extends into the wearable category in early 2015 with Apple Watch. Already, we believe there is an insatiable appetite for the iPhone 6 Plus as demonstrated by rapidly expanding pre-order shipment times and we believe Apple Watch will prove to be a home run with the fastest, new product, first-year unit sales volume in the company's history, giving Apple a foothold in what we believe will be a large, wearable tech market. As more "things" become computers, we believe Apple's expertise in designing software, hardware and services to work together will prove invaluable. We also doubt Apple is finished innovating in new product categories. For example, we still believe there is a more robust Apple TV on the horizon that can reinvent the industry.
We believe our estimates for iPhone sales of 61.5 million units for the December quarter could still be very conservative, and we are also excited about new initiatives in software and services like Apple Pay. We believe significant demand will even spill into the March and June quarters given supply and the timing of shipments in China. We reiterate our Overweight rating and our $116 price target.
Over the 3 quarters or so, we believe the mix shift toward higher priced iPhones and watches will be the big surprise for investors in terms of gross margin and revenue. We expect demand for the iPhone 6 plus to really help the story all the way into June. ... In addition to the iPhone 6's, Apple introduced Apple Watch, its first wearable offering that will ship in Early 2015. Customers will need an iPhone 5 or higher to use the watch - and like the iPhone 6's - we expect higher priced versions to surprise to the upside with 18 carat gold versions possibly selling at over $1000.
Maynard Um, Wells Fargo Securities (Market Perform)
Apple announced this morning that it received a record 4mn preorders that exceeded the initial preorder supply. While there was no comparable release for the 5S, this compares to over 2mn preorders for the iPhone 5 in the first 24 hours with a total first weekend sales of 5mn+ (roughly 40% of first weekend sales). Assuming preorders are similar to the 40% of first weekend sales for the iPhone 5, this would imply iPhone 6/6Plus first weekend sales could be around 10mn. We note that the number of launch countries for iPhone 5 and 6/6 Plus is the same except for the addition of Puerto Rico. Apple will have additional supplies for walk-in customers for the in-store launch on Friday, 9/19 and assuming Apple has more inventory on hand versus the 5 launch, it would suggest the company is on track to meet our expectation for low teens million sales for its first weekend. Apple also detailed that it's releasing the 6/6 Plus in 22 more countries on 9/26 and that this would be the largest launch, suggesting a strong December. Thus far, the launch is tracking to our expectations.
Bill Choi, Janney Capital Markets (Buy; $110 fair value estimate)
Record iPhone pre-orders confirms pent-up demand. Apple announced this morning that consumers pre-ordered a record >4 million iPhones (6 and 6 Plus) in the first 24 hours, exceeding the company's initial pre-order supply. We attribute this to the large pent-up demand for larger screens on the iPhone, as well as a stabilization in the upgrade cycle that has already elongated to over 2.5 years in the US; we estimate over 315M iPhones in the subscriber base worldwide, of which over 100M are iPhone 4S or older. We recently raised our unit sale estimates to 37.4M for F4Q (Sep.), and 60M for F1Q; supply constraints may be a limiting factor.
Expect Apple TV announcement soon. In an interview scheduled to air Friday night, CEO Tim Cook told interviewer Charlie Rose that the company has "taken steps with Apple TV," adding features and content. We still expect Apple to introduce an updated Apple TV.
TheStreet Ratings team rates APPLE INC as a Buy with a ratings score of A+. TheStreet Ratings Team has this to say about their recommendation:
"We rate APPLE INC (AAPL) a BUY. This is based on the convergence of positive investment measures, which should help this stock outperform the majority of stocks that we rate. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its revenue growth, largely solid financial position with reasonable debt levels by most measures, notable return on equity, expanding profit margins and solid stock price performance. Although no company is perfect, currently we do not see any significant weaknesses which are likely to detract from the generally positive outlook."
Highlights from the analysis by TheStreet Ratings Team goes as follows:
- Despite its growing revenue, the company underperformed as compared with the industry average of 9.3%. Since the same quarter one year prior, revenues slightly increased by 6.0%. Growth in the company's revenue appears to have helped boost the earnings per share.
- Although AAPL's debt-to-equity ratio of 0.26 is very low, it is currently higher than that of the industry average. Along with the favorable debt-to-equity ratio, the company maintains an adequate quick ratio of 1.18, which illustrates the ability to avoid short-term cash problems.
- The return on equity has improved slightly when compared to the same quarter one year prior. This can be construed as a modest strength in the organization. When compared to other companies in the Computers & Peripherals industry and the overall market, APPLE INC's return on equity exceeds that of the industry average and significantly exceeds that of the S&P 500.
- 44.56% is the gross profit margin for APPLE INC which we consider to be strong. It has increased from the same quarter the previous year. Along with this, the net profit margin of 20.69% is above that of the industry average.
- Investors have apparently begun to recognize positive factors similar to those we have mentioned in this report, including earnings growth. This has helped drive up the company's shares by a sharp 51.79% over the past year, a rise that has exceeded that of the S&P 500 Index. Regarding the stock's future course, although almost any stock can fall in a broad market decline, AAPL should continue to move higher despite the fact that it has already enjoyed a very nice gain in the past year.
- You can view the full analysis from the report here: AAPL Ratings Report
--Written by Laurie Kulikowski in New York.