back to article Analyst: There are LOADS of iPhone 5s, Apple is keeping them back

Apple is not short on iPhone 5s but is likely to be holding them back artificially for commercial reasons, an analyst said today. Walter Piecyk of Research Group BTIG said that the three to four week delay on online iPhone orders was a commercial wheeze rather than an indicator of throttling in the supply chain. Piecyk was …


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  1. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    ".......a cunning ploy to get fanbois to spend more money instore,".. and it works!

    Massively better handsets are available, but the fanbitches come back for more.

    SGIII owners, laugh, hardly and loudly at iPhone 5 buyers who are q'ing to shell out fortuen for a handset that still can't do what your handset does!

    Hardly very clever, these fanbitches.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Could it be...

      That the iPhone does everything that these 'fanbois' want out of a phone. PErhaps that is one of the reasons that they keep on buying them?

      As with the majority of PC's, they are more than capable of doing the job(s) that the majority of owners want from them. I wish that more people would recognize that fact and stop this endless slagging off of kit that other people shell out hard cash for. If everyone used the same device then would that manufacturer ever bring out a new model. 'You can have any color you like as long as it is black' (Henry Ford)

      Please note that I don't own an iPhone but a decrepit HTC Android one. However it does everything I want from a phone.

      1. Mark .

        Re: Could it be...

        But if someone is happy with not having the best phone - why spend money on the most expensive one on the market? You're sensible by buying an Android phone that's not cutting edge, but also means you save money. It makes sense to pay more to get more. It makes sense to pay less to get more. It makes no sense to pay more to get less.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      "SGIII owners, laugh, hardly and loudly at iPhone 5 buyers who are q'ing to shell out fortuen for a handset that still can't do what your handset does!

      Hardly very clever, these fanbitches."

      You are clearly a role model for native intelligence and effective education. What a strange, angry, incoherent little man you are. It must be weird for so much of your self-image to revolve around your choice of mobile phone.

      1. Toothpick

        Obviously! is just jealous.

        Who up votes him? No one - just a load of his sock puppets

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          "Obviously! is just jealous.

          Who up votes him? No one - just a load of his sock puppets"

          Well, not me. I dislike me some Apple, but that twatblanket just makes me want to go out and buy an iPhone 5 and post pictures of it seductively lit, in the hopes of giving him an aneurysm.

      2. Mark .

        To be fair it makes a change - it's usually Apple users telling us about how they have an iphone (or ipod, or ipromacbook) at every opportunity, or the media going on and on about it. I once had people in a pub butt into our private conversation about Android to go "Oh, we don't care about your open source operating system, we have iphones". It really is indeed weird that some people have to make such a deal about what phone they have, or what other people choose to use.

    3. jai

      laugh hardly? as in not very much?

      not surprised, you're all probably out of breath from having to heft such a HUGE frikken phone about

    4. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      You preaching about your choice of device like what are they called again? Oh yes, FANBOIs!

      If the phone does what they like and they're happy to pay, live and let live is what I say. I like pizza and pasta but I hate raw tomatoes. When you grow up, you obviously sound about 11 years old, you'll learn that everyone is different and everyone has different likes and dislikes.

      Oh and I am a Samsung Android owner. I just buy a device because I spent time weighing up it's pros and cons against my current needs and wants. Next year when my contract ends I might well buy an iPhone or an Android, who knows, we'll have to wait and see what is appropriate at the time I need to buy one.

      Brand loyalty is the biggest pile of utter shit to come about during 21st Century living! Like the CEO of Samsung, Apple, Nokia, HTC, VW, BMW, Honda, et al, give two flying money's fucks about whether you like their product or not, they simply need you to buy it, after that they couldn't care less if your brains melted out of your ears while using their product.

    5. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Whatever happened to having something less common and desirable?

      Or should we all wear the same very popular clothes too?

      Samsung Galaxy S3 is like Burberry.

      1. Mark .

        Tell that to the Apple fans saying we should all use ipods or ipads. Or worse, the ones who pretend iphone is the most popular platform, and then say we should use that.

        I just find it odd that with Apple, the message from the media and its fans is "think different" if they're less popular, at the same time of "let's praise Apple for being popular".

        I agree that we shouldn't all wear the same thing. But comparing the S3 to burberry is just dumb, and the same kind of fanaticism that you're criticising the OP for.

    6. Markl2011

      "SGIII owners, laugh, hardly and loudly at iPhone 5 buyers"

      "Laugh, hardly"? What, you get an errection thinking about iPhone 5 buyers?

  2. Steve Todd

    Who is this pilloc

    Just because you can request collection at store doesn't mean you can actually GET one. You put a request in, and if the store receives any stock of the model you are after AND your name gets pulled out of the hat then you get an email telling you that you can come and collect it. Otherwise rinse and repeat.

    Stock gets allocated to the cell carriers, Apple's online store and to the local Apple stores. The fact that its allocated to all three doesn't mean that they can get enough to satisfy demand.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Who is this pilloc

      I ordered mine online for pickup and you can only request pickup at a particular store if they have the phone in stock. Which at the time (10pm pacific) they had for about 2 minutes. Then the pickup option was not available.

  3. Steve Evans


    Apple throttling supply to cause hype?

    I don't believe it.

    I'm convinced that they're just completely shite at managing supply and demand.

    1. This post has been deleted by its author

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: What?

      "Never ascribe to malice that which is adequately explained by incompetence"

      Napolean Bonaparte was bang on with that one.

  4. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    yeah, and Obama is not an American, and Lord Lucan is alive

    oh ffs.

    Apple doesn't get to make millions of phones in advance because they choose to keep new models under wrap until the announcement (and sell them soon afterwards). The secrecy bit didn't go that well this time (many component leaks), but on the whole it has worked well for them. Other companies demo prototypes months before they become available, hoping to steal other's thunder but potentially Osborneing themselves. This does mean they have a big ramp-up to do, even if launches are a bit staged across countries.

    Once they are out, Apple has no interest in making less available then there is demand for. Apple has a very limited number of models and changes the lineup fewer times than the opposition. As each model is on the market, newer models from the competition arrive, possibly comparing more favourably with the latest iPhone feature/price-wise. So if I was Apple, I'd compete at the time when my advantage was maximised, i.e. early on.

    Imagine the opposite scenario where Apple stores are full of iPhones, and the carriers have none. That would go down well ...

    Reality is, logistics & supply chain is hard. Finding an analyst with two braincells ....

  5. Wang N Staines

    Impressive number

    "forecasts of 47.5 million iPhone 5s sold this quarter"

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Impressive number

      They forecast sunny skies for this morning but I got caught in a downpour. Shows how good forecasts are.

      Now actual sales numbers show Android phones outselling iPhones 3:1 so I would go by that rather than guesses about the future.

      1. Observer1959

        Re: Impressive number

        And as always android is grouped into one giant lump sum against the single iPhone. Those number include all the crap android models they sell as 2fers or free incentives. Try comparing each companies top model against the iPhone to see how things really stack up.

        1. David Hicks

          Re: Impressive number

          Yeah, the S3 outsells the most popular iPhone model now too.

        2. Steve Evans

          Re: Impressive number

          Want one model... Okay... Samsung Galaxy S3

          Copy/paste from cnet:

          "The latest sales figures from the numbercrunchers at Strategy Analytics show the S3 top at the tills, shifting 18 million phones in the last three months. Meanwhile 16.2 million iPhone 4S blowers changed hands."

          I'm making an L shape with my right hand against my forehead... That's for you that is.

        3. Mark .

          Re: Impressive number

          Well even the S3 outsells iphone 4S. Yes you can add iphone 5 to that, but then we should also add the S2, Note, Note 2, S3 Mini, as well as all the top models from HTC, LG, Sony and all the other Android manufacturers. Yeah, I think Android still wins, even if we ignore the crap.

          Plus who says where we draw the line - the original iphone couldn't even run apps, why should that have ever been counted?

          And there are loads of deals for iphones too, it gets far more marketing push than anything else.

      2. Mark .

        Re: Impressive number

        Indeed, though note it's now 5 to 1 - I believe latest stats are 75% Android, 15% iphone.

  6. Ommerson

    The Anal-lyst strikes again

    More pontificating from a professional speculator who - without breaking insider trading laws - has about the same insight as the rest of us.

  7. Anal Leakage

    "Piecyk offered little insight into the manufacturing process, but did say that he believes supply and demand for the flagship phone is "in balance" and improving."

    More quality reporting from the Reg and it's Apple-obsessed writers.

  8. imaginarynumber

    What delays????

    My brother, not an apple fanboi, was nearing the end of his contact. The week before the iPhone 5 was released his provider rang him and offered a free iPhone 5. It turned up the same day that people were queuing outside the Apple stores.

    Had the phone been in such short supply I would have expected them to offer him one "sometime" after the release date.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: What delays????

      Some stores / phone vendors had stock - it depends on how much of their allocation they sold - separate to the apple online store and apple retail stores. Pretty sure Apple will be making and selling them as quickly as possible. Delays just cost sales.

  9. Mr. EMan

    Who Needs Money?

    Why sell as much as you can and make billions when you can annoy your customer base and miss analyst estimates and drop your market share by hoarding your product and charging more, er, charging the exact same price for it.

    No, I'm sorry. I'm going to have to call CONSPIRACY IDIOT on this.

  10. Saoir

    Gullibility ........

    Oh well .... if Piecyk says so ... he MUST be right !!!!

    I don't believe a word of this crap.

  11. Michael Jennings


    Refusing to sell people stuff that people want to pay you top dollar for "commercial" or "marketing" reasons is in almost all situations an utterly stupid strategy, which is why Apple doesn't do it, and nor does any tech company I know of, and I am always dubious when somebody tells me that a company is supposedly doing this to "increase the buzz" or something. It's never true.

    (Whenever Apple announces a lower number of sales than analysts are expecting, the stock price takes a hit, too. I can't imagine why they would deliberately want that). However, Apple only releases one new model of phone per year, while its competitors sell dozens or hundreds. One thing this means is that Apple has to ramp production up from zero to maximum very quickly. They are good at it, but this is none the less hard. So there are delays of a few weeks for some people who want to buy them early. There is nothing sinister about this, and no conspiracy.

  12. Katie Saucey

    Prior art...

    Apparently (from what I'm forced to listen to), Apple's behaviour closely mimics the bulk of wives and girlfriends out there, holding out, without reason that is.

    1. GrumpyOldBloke

      Re: Prior art...

      Slightly bigger but offering much the same end user experience as the last time and the time before that and the time before that. Not good with directions. The little antenna thing might not work right and if you hold it wrong it might not work at all. Dissatisfaction with the docking accessories and compatibility. The back is easily scratched. Wireless communication is always tricky. Then there is the iPhone with its improved efficiency, longer battery life and better survivability when dropped - see the two things are completely different.

  13. Toothpick

    I think this guy is talking BS

    Wasn't there an 'apparent' shortage of 4S's also? And probably all other models before that. I waited 4 weeks for a 4S from ordering to delivery because I wanted an unlocked handset. The way I see it is the carriers get priority and punters like me have to wait.

    I'll give them credit though. They gave me a delivery date when I ordered it and it turned up that day.

  14. AdamChew

    What logic

    Apple would love to smash guesses of these analysts and so why hold back the stock f they have them.

    One more thing these mentally challenged people always love big numbers and I can't believe Apple deliberately keep their numbers small.

    An analysis that is anal.

  15. Earl Jones Of Potatoes

    ANAL .... IST

    Surely ElReg can do better than this!

    Another "ANAL ist" has suggested that ElReg most loyal readers have given up on life. The Same "anal ist" and without providing any evidence has also put forward an argument which proves that the irrational hatred some of its commentators have exhibited is only enforcing the belief that ElReg survival is in jeopardy....

    if you react to this rubbish then the story becomes true in your "world"

    Thanks for treating some of your readers likes idiots ElReg!

  16. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    I am sure every sale due to trying to artificially increase demand is offset (or more) by people who go and buy something else as a result of it not be available there and then. If they could make them to sell them I'm sure they would. Yet another analyst trying to justify his existence when in reality it's pure speculation.

  17. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Don't listen to analysts - Apple do not share extra information not available publicly to it's shareholders etc. and pretty sure they will keep a tight grip on suppliers as well to keep schtum. These guys just make guesses - should analyse their own / colleagues stock purchases just before / after their conclusions - i.e. perhaps they are buying just before some good news and selling just before dropping bad news?

    One guy says the stock is worth $400 - another says it's worth $1000 - that is a massive chunk of chance difference - imagine one agent said your house was worth 400k at best and the other one said an easy million? I take anything they say with a pinch of salt.

  18. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    This would be a stupid thing to do

    While there may be some benefit to withholding supply when a product is newly introduced, allowing it to get news coverage (and even that is questionable for iPhone, as it was going to get news coverage regardless) it would be pretty stupid to continue to withhold supply six weeks after release.

    People are going to be understanding if a product is in shortage for a few weeks after release, but at this point Apple is probably losing customers who would rather have a new phone today than wait a month. Only a fool would deliberately create this situation.

  19. Jay Zelos

    I'm fairly familer with mobile retail and the article is pretty much spot on. Apple have simply prioritised their own stores and larger carriers who had contracts in place pre launch. There isn't any particular shortage of 5's, I know of one Apple store with a large surplus just sitting in a store room. To be fair to Apple, it seems like good commercial sense to me, getting punters into the store means you can sell them more stuff as well as make sure they know how to use it to avoid any bad press or returns.

  20. Eddie Edwards

    Try 23 hours

    "Also, anyone ordering a phone through a carrier can get hold of one in a week, he said."

    Try 23 hours. Ordered one online as an upgrade to my current contract at 4pm on Thursday. Arrived 3pm on Friday. (O2).

    Maybe people aren't ordering them because they think they're scarce? :)

    PS: Can I just use this opportunity to say a big F@CK YOU to Apple for expecting me to upgrade my MAC in order to develop on my new PHONE. (Complex interaction of XCode 4.5 not running on Snow Leopard, a 2008 machine that won't run Mountain Lion, and the non-availability of Lion on App Store, which BitTorrent ended up sorting for me. Thanks, Bram :p)

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