ANALYST: Based On This Morning's Sales, We Can Confirm That iPhone 5 Sales Will Crush The iPhone 4S

iPHone 5 video shot

Photo: Screenshot/Matt Galligan

We reported early this morning that the iPhone 5 online pre-orders had sold out in just a few hours after going live at 3:01 Eastern Time.In a note out this morning, analyst Brian White at Topeka explains what that means:

Pre-Order Delivery Time Jumps from 1 Week to 2 Weeks within Hours. This morning at 3:00 AM ET, Apple began accepting pre-orders for the new iPhone 5 and we were able to buy the new device during the first hour with delivery expected on September 21. However, before 7:00 AM ET, the new iPhone 5 was cited as “available to ship: 2 weeks” on the Apple website. In our view, this suggests much stronger than expected demand versus Apple’s expectations. At the same time, this appears to be well above demand for the iPhone 4S last October as we were able to wait until the latter part of the pre-order day last year and received the iPhone 4S a week later. Clearly, iPhone 5 fever is in full swing.

White adds an estimate for sales:

Given that the iPhone 4S received over 1 million pre-orders in the first 24 hours, we indicated this week that we expected 1.3 million to 1.5 million pre-orders for the iPhone 5. At the same time, the iPhone 4S sold over 4 million units in the first three days last year, and assuming supply chain constraints aren’t a major issue, we also have projected at least 5 million to 5.5 million iPhone 5’s can be sold in this same time frame. With similar caveats, we have projected Apple could sell 10 million to 12 million iPhone 5 units in 4QFY12, making our iPhone projections look very conservative. Given the initial demand for the iPhone 5 based on the expanded shipping times (assuming no major shortage), our estimates could prove conservative.

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