Apple 2.0

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Analyst: Apple will sell 4.47 million iPhones this quarter

August 13, 2008: 10:00 AM ET

Piper Jaffray analyst Gene Munster has upped his estimate of the number of iPhones he expects Apple to sell in its 4th quarter, from 4.1 million to 4.47 million, according to a report to clients issued early Wednesday.

In the same period last year, Apple (AAPL) sold 1.12 million first-generation iPhones.

Munster's new estimate is based 1) on Apple's report that it sold 1 million iPhone 3Gs in the three days following the device's July 11 launch and 2) on 25 hours of in-store checks across the United States conducted over the past two weeks.

His team counted sales in both flagship and "regular" Apple stores and concluded that Apple sold an average of 95 units a day in each of its 188 U.S. stores over the next 27 days. He combined these results with estimates of the number of iPhones sold at AT&T's 2,200 outlets and the number sold by overseas carriers to get a grand total of 4.47 million.

On Tuesday, Fortune.com reported on the findings of an independent analyst, Michael Cote of the Cote Collaborative, who estimates that 3 million units were purchased worldwide during the iPhone 3G's first 30 days on the market. (link)

Piper Jaffray's estimate is probably conservative, says Munster, because it doesn't take into account iPhone sales in the 22 additional countries scheduled to start carrying the iPhone on Aug. 22. Moreover, he reduced to 31 his estimate of the number of iPhones sold per day for the remaining 51 days in the quarter, which ends on Sept. 30, based on a 10% falloff in sales his team observed between the first week of observation and the second.

The charts below summarize his findings:

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About This Author
Philip Elmer-Dewitt
Philip Elmer-DeWitt
Editor, Apple 2.0, Fortune

Philip Elmer-DeWitt has been following Apple since 1982, first for Time Magazine, and now on the Web for Fortune.com.

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