Apple’s iPhone 5S Approaches Important Growth Threshold

Source: Mixpanel.comThe number of iPhone users that have adopted Apple’s (NASDAQ:AAPL) flagship iPhone 5S model is on the verge of crossing an important threshold. According to the latest data from mobile analytics platform Mixpanel, Apple’s iPhone 5S model accounted for 19.35 percent of all active iPhones during the week of March 3. In other words, one out of every five iPhones in use will soon be the iPhone 5S model.

Although the discontinued iPhone 5 and the legacy iPhone 4S both currently still hold a larger share of the overall market than the iPhone 5S, the iPhone 5 and iPhone 4S are also steadily losing their market share. At the beginning of last September, the iPhone 5 accounted for over 40 percent of the total number of active iPhones. The iPhone 5’s share of the market peaked at 40.35 percent during the week of September 16, the same week that the iPhone 5S and iPhone 5C were launched. The iPhone 5 may have received a slight adoption bump that week due to the special deals that were being offered ahead of the new models’ launch. However, since then the iPhone 5 has failed to crack the 40 percent mark and its share of the overall iPhone market has steadily declined to just above 32 percent this week.

Similarly, the iPhone 4S has seen its market share slip from about 32 percent during the week that the latest iPhone models launched, to just under 24 percent this week. The iPhone 4’s market share declined from around 24 percent last September to just above 16 percent this week.

Not surprisingly, the iPhone 5S and the iPhone 5C are the only iPhone models that are gaining market share each week, according to Mixpanel’s data. However, the iPhone 5C’s growth rate is substantially slower than the growth rate for the iPhone 5S. Both models have grown their market share since the week of January 6. However, while the iPhone 5S has gained nearly five percentage points, the iPhone 5C has only gained a paltry 1.31 percentage points. Together, Apple’s two newest iPhone models currently account for over a quarter of the total number of active iPhones in the market.

A recently conducted consumer survey cited by Piper Jaffray analyst Gene Munster aligned with Mixpanel’s data.  According to the survey’s results, 33 percent of U.S. consumers that planned to buy a smartphone in the next three months intended to buy an iPhone 5S. In a note to investors, Munster observed that the iPhone 5C was likely not selling as well because its focus on color failed to excite consumers and there is a “significant value increase in purchasing the 5S.”

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