Apple’s (NASDAQ:AAPL) failure to release any pre-order numbers for the iPhone 5C appears to be making some investors jittery. The Cupertino-based company’s silence may be one reason why Apple’s stock is down by almost 3 percent this Monday afternoon. Apple typically releases iPhone pre-order numbers that reveal how many devices have been requested in the first 24 hours of availability. Apple and its carrier partners began taking pre-orders for the iPhone 5C soon after midnight PT last Friday.
However, this is the first time that Apple has not revealed pre-order numbers since it began the practice with the release of the iPhone 4 in 2009. Last year Apple’s iPhone 5 racked up over 2 million pre-orders in the first 24 hours of availability.
Since the iPhone 5C is still available directly from Apple as well as the various carriers, some analysts worry that the plastic iPhone may have had lower than expected preorder demand. On the other hand, this is also the first year that Apple has launched two different iPhone models at the same time.
Since the iPhone 5S is not available for pre-order, Apple may have simply decided to hold off on releasing any iPhone 5C numbers until it also has the first iPhone 5S sales numbers. China is the only market where customers have the option to pre-order the iPhone 5S.
Based on an informal survey of consumer sentiment on Twitter, Piper Jaffray analyst Gene Munster estimated that Apple would have approximately 1 million pre-orders for the iPhone 5C in the first 24 hours of availability. Other analysts, such as Jefferies’ Peter Misek, believe that Apple’s iPhone 5S will be in short supply due to “terrible” yield issues with the new fingerprint scanners.
Both of Apple’s new iPhones will hit store shelves on September 20. Here’s how Apple has traded so far today.
Follow Nathanael on Twitter (@ArnoldEtan_WSCS)