Analyst: iPhone 5 Sales May Be Weaker Than Expected

Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) dropped 1.86 percent to close at $632.64 on Thursday after Verizon (NYSE:VZ) said on record that it had seen supply constraints for the iPhone 5 during the September-ending quarter. And after investors, analysts were the next to take the hint.

After Verizon reported that it had made 650,000 iPhone 5 activations, Jefferies & Co. released a trimmed estimate for total iPhone 5 sales unit sales in the quarter, cutting its initial prediction of between 8 and 10 million to 5 million. “We had thought that Apple could recognize 8 to 10 million in iPhone 5 sales in Q3, but Verizon’s 650,000 implies that the number could be closer to 5 million,” Jefferies analyst Peter Misek said in a report.

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Verizon added that the iPhone 5 had accounted for 21 percent of its 3.1 million iPhone activations in the quarter, with the rest coming from older versions of the phone. About 3.4 million activations came from Google (NASDAQ:GOOG) Android devices and the rest from Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT), Research In Motion (NASDAQ:RIMM), and others.

Misek added that it appeared that the iPhone 4 and 4S had “made up for any iPhone 5 shortfall” and maintained his prediction of a total 26 million iPhone shipments for Apple in the quarter.

Verizon chief financial officer Fran Shammo said on Thursday during the company’s post-earnings conference call that it had experienced supply constraints for the new Apple smartphone. “We’re not sure where we are going to stand in the fourth quarter with those constraints. But what we are seeing on the (iPhone) 4 and the 4S is that we are attracting customers,” Shammo added.

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