Apple seems to be keeping the first weekend sales figures of its latest release, the iPhone SE, a secret, just like it has been doing for some flagship models in the past. But according to forecasts by multiple analysts, sales of the device were lackluster in the first three to four days of availability.
iPhone SE not selling very well
In a note on Monday, KGI Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo raised questions about last week’s CNBC report which claimed that orders for the iPhone SE reached more than 3.4 million in China. Kuo reported that demand for the iPhone SE has been far lower than that of past releases from the company.
Kuo said that though there is a market survey claiming preorders for the device in China are higher than 3.4 million units, more evidence in support of this claim is not available. But considering the delivery time for the iPhone SE preorders, it can be said that initial demand for the iPhone SE has been much lower than that of new models the company released in the past.
“We believe this is due in part to lackluster demand for smaller-size smartphones and, more importantly, that the product itself offers no significant upgrades to form factor or hardware specs,” Kuo said.
Localytics, a mobile analytics firm, repeated the claims Kuo made, saying adoption of the iPhone SE has been slow following its launch. The analytics firm says the iPhone SE could manage to grab just 0.1% of the iPhone market over its first weekend of sale. This indicates a lower adoption rate than the iPhone 5s and all of the iPhone 6 models.
May not help Apple much
Kuo expects overall iPhone shipments to fall below 200 million units in 2016, suggesting Apple will not get much help from the iPhone SE in overcoming “peak iPhone” units at least next year.
“In light of market feedback for iPhone 6s, 6s Plus and SE, we believe growth on replacement demand for larger display is slowing. We are therefore conservative about shipments of current iPhone models in 1Q-3Q16,” Kuo said.
Apple’s iPhone SE was launched on Thursday, the same day Tesla started accepting orders for the Model 3, which is a low-cost EV. The lines at many Tesla locations in the U.S. and Europe were longer than those at nearby Apple retail stores.