Apple (APPL) to Launch iPhones in 51 Countries as Demand Slows In China

on October 09 2013 2:08 PM
Apple iPhone 5S
In six years, Apple has gone from telling consumers how much they needed an iPhone to showing how much they love having one and how intrinsic it is to their lives. Reuters

Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) says its iPhone 5s and 5c will be available in 52 countries, including India, Russia, Mexico and Spain by next month.  

On Oct. 25, the new iPhones will begin to be sold in Ireland, New Zealand, Russia, Spain, Thailand and 30 other nations. A week later, they will launch in Colombia, India, Malaysia, Mexico, Turkey and the United Arab Emirates plus 10 more countries. (For a full list, see below.)

The new iPhones launched for the first time on Sept. 20. While the 5s has done quite well, the low-cost 5c is failing to reach the intended market. The price is still too high to compete with other low-cost smartphones in China, according to analysts.

"The feedback around demand for the iPhone 5c has been soft," analyst Brian White of Cantor Fitzgerald said to Streetinsider.com. 

He suggests that Apple needs to set the 5c at a lower price point, especially in developing markets such as China. After visiting Apple stores and resellers in the country this week, he saw an interest in the phone but not enough to take advantage of China's vast market potential. White said his sources suggest the price needs to come down to between $325 and $305 to really make an impact.

Apple announced in September that a 5c with 16 GB of memory would cost 4,488 yuan ($733).

"Even though Apple has a low-end iPhone now, its price is still considered mid-end in China and not low-end," Sandy Shen, a Shanghai-based analyst for Gartner, told Reuters last month.

Analyst Chris Caso of Susquehanna puts the price target at $625, and is still rating Apple "positive" after supply chain checks following last month's launch. 

He's expecting 51 million to 53 million iPhones to be made in the last quarter of the calendar year, along with a new iPad Mini and an update of the 10-inch iPad by the end of next year.

Caso also expects a production ramp for a new iPhone model in the second quarter of next year, based on estimates that the initial design of a 20-nanometer chip, from Apple supplier the Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co., has already been completed.

Where will the iPhones be released? 

On Oct. 25:

Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Croatia, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, French West Indies, Greece, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Macau, Malta, Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Reunion Island, Romania, Russia, Slovakia, Slovenia, South Korea, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Taiwan and Thailand

On Nov. 1:

 Albania, Armenia, Bahrain, Colombia, El Salvador, Guam, Guatemala, India, Macedonia, Malaysia, Mexico, Moldova, Montenegro, Saudi Arabia, Turkey and UAE

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