Apple has notified suppliers that it will halve its iPhone X production target for the first quarter to around 20 million units, Nikkei reported on Monday without citing a source. The cut was prompted by slower-than-expected sales in the holiday shopping season in Europe, the United States and China, according to Japan’s Nikkei. While Apple has set a target of 30 million units for Apple iPhone 8, iPhone 8 Plus and iPhone 7 models, the flagship iPhone X has seen cuts.
According to Reuters, reports of production target cuts for the iPhone X also led to Apple shares falling by as much as 2.6 percent on Wall Street. The report has added to growing concerns from investors and analysts over the weak sales of Apple’s flagship phone. Apple’s Q1 results for 2018 are expected on Thursday, January 31, 2018.
Most reports have said the iPhone X has not done as well as it was expected in terms of sales with analysts cutting forecasts for the product. However, a recent report by research firm Canalys said Apple shipped 29 million units of the iPhone X for Q4, 2017 and called it the world’s best shipping smartphone model for the holiday quarter. According to Canalys iPhone X shipments in China stood at 7 million alone, which is one of the most important smartphone markets for the company. Apple is currently number four in China, below homegrown players like Huawei, Oppo and Vivo.
Well-known Apple analyst Ming Chi-Kuo has in fact, gone on to predict the iPhone X will be discontinued after the summer of 2018. According to Kuo’s earlier report, the iPhone X will not be renewed after summer of 2018 and he also said the phone has not done well in China. If this does happen, iPhone X will be the first model, which is not continued for the second year.
Apple usually continues to sell older iPhone models, which in fact drive volumes in markets like India, etc after they get a lower price. Earlier JP Morgan’s Narci Chang also wrote a research note to investors saying the iPhone X’s manufacturing will be down by 50 per cent for the December-March period, according to a CNBC report.
While Apple iPhone X 2017 faces an uncertain future, according to reports, Apple will launch three variants of iPhone X in 2018. This will include a 5.8-inch upgraded iPhone X, iPhone X Plus with a bigger 6.5-inch display and an iPhone X with a 6.1-inch LCD display at a more budget pricing.
With Reuters inputs