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Citi Cuts Back iPhone X Forecasts Due to ‘Sluggish’ Demand

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A new prediction from Citi provides the most pessimistic numbers for Apple’s iPhone X yet.

As reported by Business Insider, they expect Apple to ship 14 million units in Q1, down from earlier expectations of 27 million, citing “sluggish” demand for the high-end smartphones. These are the most pessimistic figures yet, other analysts estimating first-quarter shipments of around 25 million units.

According to Citi, the iPhone X has limited growth prospects amid “sluggish” demand. The company had previously forecasted 27 million sales during the first quarter of the year. The report follows supply chain rumours published earlier in 2018 that claimed Apple is halving its production orders for the current quarter.

“We reduce our 1Q18E and 2Q18E iPhone build forecast mainly due to sluggish iPhone X demand,” reads the report. “For 1Q18E, we now forecast overall iPhone shipment of 51m vs. 61m previously. We reduce 1Q18E iPhone X shipment to 14m from 27m. For 2Q18E, we trim total iPhone shipment to 40m from 48m previously as we revise down iPhone X shipment to 7m. Overall, we now model 1H18E total iPhone build of 92m vs. 85m in 1H17E, up 7% [year on year].”

According to the experts, the low demand for the new Apple device should extend throughout the year 2018 and reach its peak in the second quarter, a period already considered weak for the company due to the approach of launching a new generation.

Analysts have repeatedly blamed the handset’s poor performance on a combination of its high price tag, divisive aesthetics and lack of compelling features. While capabilities such as Face ID and Animoji have drawn attention from the tech press, they offer limited real-world value for a large majority of consumers.

A survey of 1,500 iPhone owners, published by Piper Jaffray, found 44 percent haven’t upgraded because their current handset “works fine.” 31 percent said the iPhone X is “too expensive.” The responses from existing iPhone owners indicate the struggles Apple’s encountering in growing the phone’s audience.

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  • My 1/2 cents

    This year’s 10 plus won’t do much if any better in terms of sales. Three or more years ago Apple was working on this year’s phones. Apple took a gamble with the 10 and it lost.

    Depending on what the Note 9 has to offer, it would be prudent to wait until late fall to consider upgrading.

  • Tim

    I wonder how we’ll refer to this model two or three years from now… the “iPhone Dud”? “iPhone Xpensive”?… They’ll probably be able to generate more interest at a $799 price point using an LCD, and keeping the rest of the features. They’re also contending with a collective realization that getting a new battery can add a second life to a phone. I kinda love my 6S plus to be honest and the longer I keep it, the more it feels like the Millenium Falcon to me; it’s got some dings, but totally gets the job done and more. Just changing the case and/or wallpaper is another good way to make your device feel “new”, and at a fraction of the cost.

  • Riddlemethis

    You’re not alone. I have read so many articles and comments about the 6S that it’s the best iPhone model made to date.

    Another good way to keep it new is not updating to the latest iOS. Unfortunately, everyone has no choice with iOS 11.3 because it tells you if your battery needs to be replaced.

  • KBlazer07

    Good thing for Apple that the watch is doing well. The X and HomePod are both duds. Hopefully the 2018 X models will come down in price, anything over $1000 is way too much for a phone. Good comment above about how people are realizing that replacing a battery will get you 5 years plus from a phone. This will hurt the phone market big time.

  • Riddlemethis

    Is the watch really doing well? Those people I know who bought it have said they are rather disappointed with it. The poor battery life was also a major let down.

    And no way the X+ will not drop in price. Only the foolish will buy it.

  • Joe

    I own a watch (Series 2) and it’s great. Battery life has never been an issue, it lasts way longer than the iPhone. It requires charging every 2 days, although I charge it every night.

    The only real problem for me with the watch is that it’s slow. Launching apps and trying to multi-task leaves a lot to be desired.

    I also have an iPhone X, and I will say that the OLED screen is very nice. Whether customers are willing to pay for it is a totally different story, but I am very pleased with the phone.

  • BeaveVillage

    We don’t want the notch, find a way to remove it and a sale is made.

  • Farids

    Add the 44 percent to the 31 percent. The ones that said their current handset is working fine are politely saying since the iPhone X is so damn expensive, they will put up with the “Fine” performance of their current phone. Otherwise, most of these people are the ones that upgraded to a new iPhone every couple of years and kept the numbers growing when the iPhone prices were much less a few years back.

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