Apple has sold 3 million iPads in less than three months, a faster-than-expected pace that boosted its stock days before the company's newest iPhone hits store shelves. The iPhone 4 upgrade for older iPhones is also available from the iPhone App Store through iTunes.
Apple also starts selling the iPhone 4 in the five of the world's six largest economies on Thursday, shot up as much as 2.1 per cent before ending the day up 1.4 per cent.
Investors will now turn their attention to Thursday's iPhone launch. Apple moved 600,000 of the slimmer and better-equipped, $199 iPhone 4 in its first day of pre-sales, in a deluge of interest that jammed up ordering systems. Canada will get the iPhone 4 later in July 2010.
The estimates are that Apple will move 8.1 million iPhones in the fiscal third quarter ending June 26, surging to 12.1 million in the fiscal fourth quarter as the iPhone 4 production chain accelerates to meet demand.
The iPhone 4 begins selling in the U.S., Japan, France, Germany and Britain this week but will be in 88 countries by September – the company's fastest-ever global product roll-out.
JP Morgan estimated that 10 million iPhones will ship every quarter as the iPhone 4 takes hold, from around 8 million in the current quarter.
The iPhone is Apple's main growth driver at the moment, and is expected to soon become its biggest source of revenue as the company expands the smart phone around the globe. Surprisingly the iPhone has a long way to go in Asia and other global markets. We forget this when we live in North America where the iPhone is everywhere.
Early indications are that the smart phone – which sports a higher-resolution screen, about 40 per cent more battery life, video chat via Wi-Fi, and a gyroscope sensor for improved gaming – will be well-received.
Critics who tested the gadget, raved about the simple-to-use video chat and about four-times sharper display, but warned that Apple had not yet fully addressed longstanding complaints about the iPhone's inability to multi-task, or run applications simultaneously. The device now offers limited multi-tasking.
As investors and consumers await the market debut of the newest-generation iPhone, investors are increasingly convinced that the iPad is already a hit. The tablet's faster-than-anticipated sales have helped Apple overtake Microsoft to become the world's most valuable technology company.
Business professionals continue to underestimate demand for iPad. Part of the reason is that the iPad, as a tablet, is a relatively new product category where it fits in between a smart phone and a notebook PC.
Before the launch in early April, many on Wall Street professionals had expected the company to sell roughly one million iPads in Apple's current quarter. Multiply this number by 3 and you have the real number. Apple sold 1 million iPads in the first month after the U.S. launch on April 3, and had sold 2 million iPads by May 31. It hit the 3 million mark on June 21, it said in a release on Tuesday.
Apple is expected to sell 9.7 million iPads for calendar 2010. Improved supply and international expansion has helped Apple accelerate the rate at which it is selling the device.