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iPhone 6 rumor rollup for the week ending April 25

John Cox | April 28, 2014
Aesthetics reared its ugly, or beautiful (depending on your side of the debate), head in the iOSphere this week, as commentarians contemplated the question of whether real iPhones have curves.

Stranger things have happened, of course. It just seems a bit odd that - five months from the most-expected iPhone 6 announcement date - Apple is only now discovering there's a problem with thick batteries.

iPhone 6 metal casings to be produced by a Taiwan firm you've never heard of

This is one of those "facts" that doesn't really lead anywhere, and yet provides the perfect growth medium for iOSphere conclusions.

The starting point is a post at FocusTaiwan, which is the English-language news service of Central News Agency (CAN), a Taiwan-based news and media company. The FT post is based on an investors report, prepared by Morgan Stanley analyst Grace Chen, about Catcher Technology Co., which manufacturers metal (and other materials) casings for a wide range of products, including smartphones. It is at least one supplier of machined aluminum bodies for various Apple products, including the iPhone.

"Taiwan's Catcher Technology Co., a casing supplier for Apple Inc., will benefit from next-generation iPhone product cycle and the growing adoption of metal casings in smartphones, Morgan Stanley said Monday in a research note," according to the FT post.

"Chen expects Catcher to ship 10.5 million iPhone 6 casings in 2014, representing an estimated 15 percent share of overall iPhone 6 orders, and will ship 20 million casings for all iPhone models, about a 17 percent share of total iPhone orders," according to the post.

Doing the math, the result shows that Chen apparently believes that Apple will or could or might ship a total of 70 million iPhone 6 units in 2014, most of the presumably during the October-December quarter. So...she likes outlook for Catcher's stock.

Another CNA news outlet, TaipeiTimes.com, carried a post about a second stock analyst report on Catcher Technology, this one from Barclays Capital. Barclays, too, raised its target share price for Catcher, and "said it expects Apple's next-generation smartphone to be launched in the second half of the year and that shipments of the new model will be 35 to 40 percent higher than the previous one."

The fact that Catcher continues to be a case supplier to Apple for the iPhone doesn't really tell us anything about the iPhone 6. It's a fact without meaning. The only fact with potential meaning is Chen's guestimate of how many iPhone 6 units she thinks Apple will ship this year.

But the iOSphere boldly ventured into extrapolation.

Mihai Matei, at GForGames, condescendingly begins his post about the two analyst forecasts by claiming that the "The iPhone 5S seems to lose its charm, reason why recently, the handset in question has been massively discounted in the US." (Apart from being false, his claim ignores the fact that in Apple's just-announced second quarter iPhone sales were stronger than expected, at 43.7 million units, increasing from 37.4 million units in last year's second quarter, resulting in a slight hike in quarterly profit and revenue.)

 

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