Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) will likely refresh its iPhone5 and release it this summer or at least by the third quarter of this year, according to analysts from two firms.
Analysts at Canaccord Genuity and Topeka Capital Markets have both issued reports to investors this week; they said that their checks of Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL)’s supply line indicate that a summer or third quarter iPhone 5S release is likely.
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Analysts at Canaccord Genuity reiterated their Buy rating on shares of Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL); although, they have lowered their price target from $650 per share to $600 per share.
The analysts believe Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) will begin to lose market share during the first half of this year because there is a “host of impressive recently-launched high-end Android smartphones” being released right now. The Samsung Galaxy S4 in particular just came out this month and is expected to put pressure on Apple.
Canaccord Genuity analysts said in their note that “Apple has a strong product pipeline” and believe that the company’s year over year earnings growth will accelerate once again in the September quarter, even though the company may be struggling right now.
The analysts have also lowered their sales expectations for the June quarter, bumping their iPhone sales estimates from 36 million units to 25 million units. However, they have raised their September quarter estimates from 38 million units to 39.6 units on expectations of an August iPhone 5S launch.
Topeka Capital’s Brian White believes that the key to Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL)’s getting back on track is to ink a deal with China Mobile this year. He said the number of wireless subscribers in China grew 12 percent year over year to 1.13 billion in February, and China Mobile is the only major carrier in China that doesn’t offer the iPhone on its network.
He believes that offering a low-cost iPhone will enable Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) to make a deal with China Mobile, enabling it to expand its market share in China. White also expects the tech giant to finalize a deal with the carrier by the end of this year.
Shares of Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) are trading mostly flat in Wednesday afternoon activity.