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Apple Blames Earnings Miss On iPhone 5 Anticipation

Soulskill posted about a year and a half ago | from the doesn't-fall-far-from-the-tree dept.

Iphone 242

Hugh Pickens writes "Reuters reports that Apple shed more than five percent of its stock price value in after-hours trading after the company reported its second quarterly miss on results in less than a year, highlighting how the Apple brand is becoming less resistant to the economic and product cycles that have plagued rivals. 'Clearly it was a disappointment,' says Channing Smith, Co-Manager of Capital Advisors Growth Fund. 'We expected a lot of consumers will probably delay their upgrade and their purchases until the iPhone 5 comes out. We saw a similar trend occur last year with the iPhone 4S.' Executives acknowledged buyers were refraining from purchases because of 'rumors and speculation' around the iPhone 5, which sources have said will ship in September with a thinner and larger screen. 'The iPhone 5 is already the most hyped device and for it to exceed expectations is going to be really hard,' says BGC Partners analyst Colin Gillis. This is one of many reasons Apple is so notoriously secretive. With the levels of hype that Apple product launches garner, it would undoubtedly crush its own sales if it announced products even months in advance. Instead, Apple slowly and silently draws down inventory in distribution channels, and then the upgraded product is available immediately (or nearly immediately) after it's announced. According to Apple CEO Tim Cook, 'there is an incredible anticipation out there or for future products and as you would expect given what we've been able to deliver in the past.'"

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242 comments

Absolute nonsense (3, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#40762773)

There's nothing remarkabe about iApple products anymore, they're no better than MicroSoft products.

Re:Absolute nonsense (0)

sirkumi (1752188) | about a year and a half ago | (#40762787)

I disagree - I find "the levels of hype that Apple product launches garner" quite remarkable indeed.

Re:Absolute nonsense (5, Insightful)

ByOhTek (1181381) | about a year and a half ago | (#40763019)

Or in this case, hypowned.

Actually, I would initially argue Google as well as MS, however aside from Hype, there is one thing, which at first glance can look like a bad thing, but can also be turned into a case of 'turning your weaknesses into your strengths'.

Apple has much less variety in product lines than Google or MS in terms of the small-form-factor mobile market (cell phones, int the case of Google, tablets), or MS in terms of the notebook/desktop market. One reason I wouldn't get a MacBook - I'd have to pay a premium for things I don't give a damn about, while still missing things that are important to me.

How does Apple turn this weakness into a strength? Several things, some good, some, IMO, underhanded.
1) More time for QA - since the products are tied together, and their is a smaller variance, Apple can spend more time on QA per product, while still spending a lot less money on QA. I wouldn't argue they are any more stable than a good MS or Google product, but they certainly are less quirky than all but the very best MS or Google alternatives, and they are more polished in most regards, than any of the competing products.
2) Marketing - Apple can get by the lack of options by convincing the market they want what Apple is selling, rather than selling what the market wants. Often promoting hackish/clunky workarounds as acceptable. The caveat, is these tend to also primarily affect smaller groups in the market.
3) Less confusion - users won't get option overload, which easily happens for a user not fairly well knowledgeable in a subject where there are many options.

Re:Absolute nonsense (3, Insightful)

ethanms (319039) | about a year and a half ago | (#40763341)

Apple has much less variety in product lines than Google or MS in terms of the small-form-factor mobile market (cell phones, int the case of Google, tablets)...

How does Apple turn this weakness into a strength?

The smaller number of products as well as a better defined launch schedule with stable form factors, UI, feature sets and accessories are also good at capturing an audience of people who are either techno-phobic or simply do not have the time or desire to re-buy and re-learn products every couple of years.

I am a highly technical person, but I appreciate how simple it is to use a iPhone, and what I learned 5 years ago is still largely applicable to using one today, but with some incremental additions.

The same cannot be said for most cell phones or smartphones from 5 years ago, changing UIs, changing feature sets, etc... all make it very difficult to know what you're getting or how to use it--at least without spending significant time with it. There are a gazillion "Android" phones out there... how do I know if I want 2.1, 2.2, 2.3, 3.0?, what do the different processor names mean?, can I actually compare "GHz" to get a reasonable idea of what is best (no)?, what apps will or won't run on this?

Often times you're forced to wait for extensive reviews of a product before you consider it because "specsmanship" means almost nothing with some of the garbage produced by certain companies. Fortunately HTC, Samsung and others have started learning that although outright lying and inflating capabilities may inflate short term sales, it only does long term brand damage, so it seems like they're producing better products these days.

Let's also not forget support--it's far easier to find people to help you use an iPhone than some random smart phone from some manufacturer. There are constant updates to the SW and apps, and for the most part these things tend to make improvements, whereas I've found with Android an update can wind you up in a broken state (this is where the walled garden, closed OS and tight HW control makes the world of difference)

Re:Absolute nonsense (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#40763659)

>with Android, an update can land you in a broken state
I suggest you read the forums on this one. One iPhone update for me screwed my phone. Because of the precious "walled garden" you so highly praise, I couldn't copy any music to my phone (a common problem, that is a fundamental capability on an Android device). After a week of cursing, i accepted the recommended solution... Rebuild my phone - which cost me a lot if time (days).
iTunes (walled garden) is the bane of IOS. It should be shot and put out of its misery. I have had so many problems with iTunes, it's laughable.

Re:Absolute nonsense (4, Insightful)

oGMo (379) | about a year and a half ago | (#40763691)

There are a gazillion "Android" phones out there... how do I know if I want 2.1, 2.2, 2.3, 3.0?, what do the different processor names mean?, can I actually compare "GHz" to get a reasonable idea of what is best (no)?, what apps will or won't run on this?

Clearly a troll, but common FUD nonetheless---and, as per the parent, Apple turning a weakness into a (perceived) strength). However, either:

  • You know enough to care, in which case you want the latest. You read a few reviews (there really aren't that many top phones every year) or ask someone you know, and find the clear winner. You know enough to compare simple numbers, such as versions.
  • You don't care, you just want one of these shiny smart android things you saw in a commercial. You ask the person at the store. He or she recommends one, you buy it. You're happy.

Despite "choice is bad" propaganda, which is surprisingly successful, especially among those who should know better, actually making a good choice is not difficult for anyone.

Re:Absolute nonsense (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#40763295)

Its Apples own downfall though because people want the latest gadget and if there is no new products then people will just sit and wait. WIth Android phones you will always have a new device every couple of months so you have your pick of the latest gadgets or you can wait for a new Nexus series for stability which is similar to the Iphone.

Re:Absolute nonsense (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#40762813)

You're remarking on them.

Re:Absolute nonsense (1)

hcs_$reboot (1536101) | about a year and a half ago | (#40762867)

TFS is about phones - iPhone. Clearly, the competition is currently more on the Android/Samsung side than on Microsoft/Nokia.

Re:Absolute nonsense (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#40763125)

TFS is about phones - iPhone. Clearly, the competition is currently more on the Android/Samsung side than on Microsoft/Nokia.

Android activations passed 900,000 per day early this month.

Apple and Microsoft/Nokia are competing for their slops.

Re:Absolute nonsense (1, Interesting)

toriver (11308) | about a year and a half ago | (#40763253)

Question: Does it count as an activation whenever someone installs a new OS release on their phone? In that case, the number is misleading.

Re:Absolute nonsense (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#40763431)

Answer: yes because that falls under the definition of activation.

To further expand, no one but FOSS weirdos with extreme needs for external validation cares about activations, and they care only because that is one of the few definitive metrics by which they are 'winning'. As if using FOSS were ever a popularity contest or that any of us who have been using it for more than a decade care about that, apart from the ripple effect of having some popular applications available on the platform. But we've always had good app, even when we weren't popular. Linux can't scratch out much more than a few percent of the desktop users but that doesn't discourage me one bit.

Companies themselves, Google and Apple and Samsung, care much more about how much money they are making. If they could do it selling a single phone at a few billion profit, they'd be just as happy. If they could sell no phones at all and just knock you in the head and take the money from your pocket, they'd be just as happy. So by the only metric that matters to the corporate players in the mobile market Apple is cleaning up. The rest of us normals don't care whether the guy next to us on the train is running the same mobile OS as we are and in fact probably won't bother to notice.

Re:Absolute nonsense (2)

jedidiah (1196) | about a year and a half ago | (#40763645)

It's funny how market share metrics suddenly become something that only weirdos would be interested in once it is some form of Linux that is making a good showing.

It's just nice to know that the future isn't owned by Apple.

Re:Absolute nonsense (1, Informative)

dc29A (636871) | about a year and a half ago | (#40763661)

I don't think there a lot of people activating phones by installing ROMS. Even Cyanogen, the most popular ROM has only 2.7 million total installs [cyanogenmod.com]. That's what? 3 days worth of Android activations. A drop in the bucket. The average user has no knowledge in flashing ROMS and installing even factory images.

Re:Absolute nonsense (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#40763273)

Ugh... I'll take an Android/not-Samsung (preferably Motorola or HTC), WP 7 (not Samsung), or iPhone over Samsung ANY DAY.

Between me and my friends, 0 for 7 (by number of models, number of phones would be closer to 0 for 13) in getting a Samsung phone that wasn't stuck with shit quality software.

Re:Absolute nonsense (-1, Troll)

jd2112 (1535857) | about a year and a half ago | (#40763563)

There's nothing remarkabe about iApple products anymore, they're no better than MicroSoft products.

Have you looked at a Windows phone lately? All but the most blinded by Apple hatred can see that the iPhone is vastly superior to Windows phone. I'd use a BlackBerry before using a Windows phone.

Re:Absolute nonsense (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#40763607)

"Apple blames earnings on iPhone5 anticipation"... but they'll continue coming up with more cockamamie reasons to sue manufacturers of superior smartphones, just, y'know, to be on the safe side. You never can sue too many people, after all!

Its a miss... (4, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#40762785)

But still insane profit.

Re:Its a miss... (5, Insightful)

PopeRatzo (965947) | about a year and a half ago | (#40763139)

Its a miss...But still insane profit.

What's insane is that a company that did so well is considered to have "missed".

If you extrapolate from this one fact, that Apple does extremely well but is said to "miss" and the stock price goes down because their profits didn't grow faster than before, if you extrapolate from this one fact, you can understand why the economy - the whole economic system - is collapsing under its own greed. Enough is never enough.

[Full disclosure: I'm a shareholder since the Michael Spindler days, and yes, I understand about corporate "guidance" and what it means to say they "missed". My point stands.]

Re:Its a miss... (4, Insightful)

Kokuyo (549451) | about a year and a half ago | (#40763291)

I agree wholeheartedly... it's even worse than that: Take Swisscom as an example. They make about a billion in profit per year. Last year, IIRC, they made about 1.1 billion. This was, again IIRC, more than they made the year previous.

Since analysts had expected them to make 1.2 billion, their stock fell. They made more than the year before and still they get the finger just because they made less progress than some other random schmuck expected.

How's that even sane?

Re:Its a miss... (1, Insightful)

danbert8 (1024253) | about a year and a half ago | (#40763331)

Even more insane is that a company that makes purely luxury products has the largest market cap in what everyone has been touting as a "great recession". At least Exxon makes stuff we need...

Re:Its a miss... (0)

PopeRatzo (965947) | about a year and a half ago | (#40763579)

Even more insane is that a company that makes purely luxury products has the largest market cap in what everyone has been touting as a "great recession".

There is no recession among the customers for luxury goods. Our system is designed so that there can never be one.

Re:Its a miss... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#40763693)

Rich people still have to buy yachts, they don't care about the recession.

Re:Its a miss... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#40763353)

The fun fact is, you can probably exploit the irrationality to your own ends, i.e. buy low sell high.

Stock market is not objective (4, Insightful)

MikeMo (521697) | about a year and a half ago | (#40763369)

What you gotta realize is that the stock market, and especially the price of certain closely watched stocks like Apple's, are driven by trader's emotions and expectations. If they believe the price will go up, they buy, and the price goes up. If they believe it will fall, they sell, and the price goes down.

If it were objective, based solely on P/E ratios and such, Apple would already be trading at over $1,000.

Re:Its a miss... (1)

dhammond (953711) | about a year and a half ago | (#40763593)

Well, if their stock price reflected the fact that people thought they were going to make 1.2 billion, then it makes sense that it would go down when they make less than that. I'm no expert, but I think that's the way the stock market works.

Re:Its a miss... (0)

bondsbw (888959) | about a year and a half ago | (#40763401)

It surprises me that we still live in a world where investors are so quick to pull the trigger. Apple is a company well known for having a stable routine of producing new gadgets that will practically print money for them.

In my opinion, that is the worst problem of capitalism (coming from a supporter of capitalism)... the need for results now, not tomorrow, not next week, even when a delayed solution is better for the company and/or society. [/soapbox]

Anyway, it will work itself out in the wash... the stock price will go up when the iPhone 5 is announced, and the trend will likely look like previous years (assuming the Jobs factor wasn't truly the only thing keeping the company going).

Re:Its a miss... (0, Flamebait)

Beyond_GoodandEvil (769135) | about a year and a half ago | (#40763525)

Apple is a company well known for having a stable routine of producing new gadgets that will practically print money for them.
No, Apple is now a fashion house and their great leader has died, so there is great uncertainty that the fashion house can still make the great shiny that everyone wants to buy.

The stock market is a futures market. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#40763487)

That's what people don't get: stocks trade on what people think how well the company will do in the future. And if the earnings miss that, then of course the stock price goes down or the other way if the company does better than projected.

As far as the "greed" is concerned - for us regular Joes, there's no place to get a decent return on our money. Bank rates are chump change, bonds pay nothing and they're effectively paying negative interest, real estate is for shit in most parts of the country, and the only place one could get any sort of decent return is the stock market.

Greed? Pffft! It's more like trying to stay even!

In the meantime, some members of the elite are getting $60 million pay-offs because they worked at Google doing something that for the life of me I can't get a solid idea what they did and look great in a cocktail dress and heels [google.com]- even though they have no plan on how to justify their pay.

Greed, indeed.

Re:The stock market is a futures market. (1)

PopeRatzo (965947) | about a year and a half ago | (#40763569)

As far as the "greed" is concerned - for us regular Joes

That's not what I'm talking about. I'm not even talking about share price or investing in the stock market.

From your last graph I can see you understand that.

it looks bad (4, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#40762801)

but imagine how bad it will be when apple's competitors products are no longer being blocked by the court system in frivolous lawsuits.

Re:it looks bad (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#40762907)

maybe if they didn't file so many frivolous lawsuits they would have hit their profit projections?

Re:it looks bad (5, Insightful)

Chrisq (894406) | about a year and a half ago | (#40762915)

but imagine how bad it will be when apple's competitors products are no longer being blocked by the court system in frivolous lawsuits.

From Apple's point of view they are far from frivolous. They are a delaying tactic, so that competitors products come to market later than the equivalent Apple technology generation.

Re:it looks bad (1)

JasterBobaMereel (1102861) | about a year and a half ago | (#40763071)

5 Products (all but 2-3 are obsolete) against (after a quick look) more than 100 current products, from more than 10 manufacturers .... how exactly do they delay all of these in all countries ?

Re:it looks bad (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#40763625)

If they are stooping to that level, what does that say about their confidence in their own products?

Re:it looks bad (1)

anerki (169995) | about a year and a half ago | (#40763367)

Finally I'll be able to sell my stoch of Samsung Galaxy 7.7 tablets as well as other equally outdated tablets!

Maybe the expectations are unrealistic? (5, Insightful)

zzzy (913235) | about a year and a half ago | (#40762809)

Anyone with a shade of education will understand statistical deviation around a steady trend. If you expect to make the exact extrapolated revenue figure, well, you should maybe go back to school or finde a more appropriate job than administering investment funds or consulting for the investment community. Just a thought.

Re:Maybe the expectations are unrealistic? (4, Insightful)

MickyTheIdiot (1032226) | about a year and a half ago | (#40762913)

The thing is they don't care about your fancy book learning, they want that money in their back account NOW.

It's yet another problem with corporate governance. They'd rather take the $5 they earn right now rather than the $5000 it can grow into if they cultivate a long-term strategy and act in a sane manor.

Re:Maybe the expectations are unrealistic? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#40762983)

books r for fags now gimme mah moneh!

Well? (0)

SmallFurryCreature (593017) | about a year and a half ago | (#40763061)

If I can make 5 bucks a day, or 5000 in 2000 days, I take the 5 bucks a day thank you very much.

Or in other words, numbers pulled out of your ass have no value.

Re:Well? (1)

MickyTheIdiot (1032226) | about a year and a half ago | (#40763087)

When you take the $5 out of the system that's it. You are not making any more money. You're "5000 in 2000 days" is not relevant.

Re:Maybe the expectations are unrealistic? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#40763083)

What if they do their acting in an insane manor, such as in the Fawlty Towers hotel?

Re:Maybe the expectations are unrealistic? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#40763601)

They'd rather take the $5 they earn right now rather than the $5000 it can grow into if they cultivate a long-term strategy and act in a sane manor.

That is the exact opposite of what Apple has done to put themselves in their current position of making almost uncountable sums of money. The vast bulk of their major moves have been in the opposite direction of status quo.

When all the talking heads said specialty electronics retail was dead, Apple opened a few high end stores selling only the few items in the lineup, and it was an enormous success.

When the portable audio market was maturing and margins were thinning out, Apple jumped in. No wireless, less space than a nomad, gobbled up the entire market and made billions in profit at the same time.

When the smartphone market was owned by Nokia and RIM and everyone said if you get into it you would have to cater to enterprise customers, Apple went in with the opposite. And cleaned up again. To such an extent that if you walk up to a teenage girl and ask her is she'd trade her iphone for rim, she slaps you in the face.

Tablet computing? No freaking way. Tried, failed, no such market. But, foolishly, Apple went ahead and gave it a go. The result? Better rent more warehouses to store all this iPad money in.

And it terms of the long term strategy, this is exactly what a hardware company should be doing. Putting R&D money into figuring out how to integrate new technology into new devices in ways people will want to use. Apple didn't just pick some parts off the same shelf everyone else was using, slap their logo on it, and ship it off to be yet another also ran. They took risks.

As for analysts, those predictions are influenced by a whole lot of things, the least of which is what anyone thinks a given company will actually do. If a couple of big market players release their 'predicitons', based on what they want the stock to do given their holdings, everyone else will fall in line because there is safety in number. If everyone is wrong, well that just illustrates the unpredictable nature of prediction markets. If just one guy is wrong, he gets fired.

Duh! (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#40762817)

The only people who were disappointed with Apple's results were the "financial analysts" (and I put that in quotes for a reason...) who made wild predictions and were proven, as they often seem to be proven, wrong. I don't know of any other profession, _including_ meteorologists, where being wrong in your prediction that often is acceptable.

Anyone who couldn't foresee buyers slowing down on iPhone purchases as the refresh date approaches, is an idiot. Apple has released their new model like virtual clockwork for several years. There was going to be a slowdown. Expect it. Here, I'll make a bold prediction - in one year's time, rumours will ramp up of an "iPhone 6" (which will actually be called the "iPhone 5S" though nobody will be smart enough to foresee that...) and sales of the iPhone 5 will slow down though Apple will still have an exceptionally strong quarter selling an enormous number of devices though "market analysts" will claim it's a disappointment. Write it down. Take it to the bank. That's a prediction you can bet money on.

Seriously, why investment firms pay these morons even a penny for their ill-informed random guessing is beyond me. Actually, that's not fair - if they were guessing randomly, they'd at least have a chance of periodically getting it right and the majority of these people get it 180 degrees wrong every time...

Re:Duh! (2)

CastrTroy (595695) | about a year and a half ago | (#40763021)

I don't think any fault lies on apple for this one. The financial analysts were wrong. I'm sure if you had asked accountants at Apple 2 months into the quarter they could have told you a much more accurate number of where they would be at the end of the quarter. All that being said, the analysts were only off by 6%. That's not all that much in the grand scheme of things. Especially considering they made a 23% profit (8 billion from one source I read). Any company that can make 23% profit selling electronics should be applauded.

Re:Duh! (0, Troll)

SJHillman (1966756) | about a year and a half ago | (#40763049)

I hear even the Borg can only make 20% profit selling assimilated tech. They don't have as near total control over the Hive as Apple does over the hipsters.

Re:Duh! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#40763397)

I don't think any fault lies on apple for this one. The financial analysts were wrong. I'm sure if you had asked accountants at Apple 2 months into the quarter they could have told you a much more accurate number of where they would be at the end of the quarter. All that being said, the analysts were only off by 6%. That's not all that much in the grand scheme of things. Especially considering they made a 23% profit (8 billion from one source I read). Any company that can make 23% profit selling electronics should be applauded.

The fact that a company's shares take a hit because they "missed forecasts" when their profits were still at 23% is asinine. It's like telling your kid after his little league game, "Sorry kid, I'm disappointed in you. You hit a triple, but I was expecting a home run."

It just goes to show you how messed up big business is today.

Another factor everyone seems to be ignoring (1)

crazyjj (2598719) | about a year and a half ago | (#40763191)

Anyone could also see that Tim Cook is no Steve Jobs (it's unrealistic to expect that of ANYONE). Why everyone just assumed that Apple could continue on without taking at least some hit with the loss of Steve Jobs that is beyond me. Love him or hate him, you have to admit that there are very few leaders capable of inspiring and leading Apple staff (or bullying/conning them, if you want to take that view) quite like Steve Jobs.

Re:Duh! (1)

Jurily (900488) | about a year and a half ago | (#40763279)

I don't know of any other profession, _including_ meteorologists, where being wrong in your prediction that often is acceptable.

Keep in mind, that drop that the smart guys couldn't predict, was caused by rumors. The stock market is a strange beast, and nobody understands it completely: the very act of trying to model it, changes it. At least for models with enough predictive power to make you money.

Re:Duh! (1)

Sarten-X (1102295) | about a year and a half ago | (#40763395)

Oh, come on... Everybody knows that the stock market is just a simple random walk, and any attempts at prediction are futile. Some folks buy, some folks sell, and there's no logic or trends in any of it. Analysts don't really "analyze" anything. They just sit in their offices all day drinking scotch and bourbon, throwing darts at a globe to decide where their next hunting trip will be. When it comes time for the quarter end, they roll some dice to guess what a particular company will do next quarter, then have their hookers/secretaries write it up in a nice fancy report with fancy words like "liquidity" (which is a euphemism for liquor), "market cap" (which refers to what the analyst will use to hide his bald spot), and "projection" (which is a thinly veiled reference to the analyst's penis).

It's not like those guys have to think or anything...

</sarcasm>

Disclaimer: I work with finance folks. I do not understand how they do what they do, and I do not pretend to.

Waiting for 5 (1)

Bigbutt (65939) | about a year and a half ago | (#40762835)

Yea, I have a 3GS and am ready to replace it with a new phone. I like the iPhone but am waiting on the 5 before I upgrade, especially since it's just a couple of months away.

[John]

Re:Waiting for 5 (1)

Rik Sweeney (471717) | about a year and a half ago | (#40762901)

I like the iPhone but am waiting on the 5 before I upgrade, especially since it's just a couple of months away.

Closely followed by the 5S just after Christmas.

Re:Waiting for 5 (1)

quacking duck (607555) | about a year and a half ago | (#40763241)

There's plenty of things to slam Apple for, the myth that they refresh products quickly is not one of them. Apple is actually not releasing new hardware fast enough to keep up with Android; once a year for both iPhone and iPad, versus a dozen new Android models each year from Samsung alone. People who slam Apple but give Android makers a pass are hypocrites.

Re:Waiting for 5 (0)

dc29A (636871) | about a year and a half ago | (#40763549)

I like the iPhone but am waiting on the 5 before I upgrade, especially since it's just a couple of months away.

Closely followed by the 5S just after Christmas.

Care to explain the 18 month life the iPhone 4 had?

Re:Waiting for 5 (4, Interesting)

vux984 (928602) | about a year and a half ago | (#40762931)

I've got a 3GS also, but am really at a crossroads. I bought the 3GS week one after the launch. At the time it was the exact phone I wanted. Now, though I'm torn... my 3GS screen just cracked and nothing is quite right.

No point in buying a 4S with the 5 around the corner. (Hell even if i wanted a 4S, waiting for the 5 and picking up the 4S on sale or gently used makes sense. But really.. I don't have a 4 or 4S precisely becuase they added nothing I wanted. And iphone 5 isn't looking to change that.

The Samsung Galaxy S3 is high on my list and well reviewed, but until they officially announce jellybean for it with a ship date... I'm holding out. I've been burned before on promised upgrades that never materialized. Jelly bean seems like enough of an improvement that I won't settle for for anything less.

And even the Lumia's -- I actually really like them and am even seriously consideriing one for my next phone, but with WinPhone 8 around the corner, and it already being announced that the existing lumia's won't be upgraded. Again... holding out.

Right now is just a terrible time to buy almost a smart phone, to the point I'm seriously considering getting the screen fixed on this one. I can hand it down to my daughter or something.

Re:Waiting for 5 (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#40762967)

Samsung is generally good with releasing upgrades for their phones. I have an SGII that shipped with Gingerbread, and is now running ICS. Even when your specific carrier is slow, Samsung tends to release the stock firmware so that there are lots of options to upgrade.

Re:Waiting for 5 (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#40763039)

Samsung is generally good with releasing upgrades for their phones.

No they aren't. They are absolutely terrible. The original Galaxy S had massive amounts of delays in getting updates.

Re:Waiting for 5 (1)

gl4ss (559668) | about a year and a half ago | (#40763079)

Samsung is generally good with releasing upgrades for their phones.

No they aren't. They are absolutely terrible. The original Galaxy S had massive amounts of delays in getting updates.

as long as you're getting unlocked then gal s 3 isn't a bad choice, if you're willing to roll with 3rd party updates. the series is so popular that you can get ICS for gal s 1 now.

Re:Waiting for 5 (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#40763299)

No they aren't. They are absolutely terrible. The original Galaxy S had massive amounts of delays in getting updates.

Well, it was pretty fast with the SG2. I didn't have a Galaxy S, but there are ICS ROMs for it now over at XDA. To be fair, my carrier is lagging way behind, but Samsung is posting firmware which is available for my phone.

Re:Waiting for 5 (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#40763089)

The ICS upgrade for the AT&T SGS2 is absolutely awful. They even shipped it with a kernel that had a bug causing hard bricks in some devices. It's so bad that virtually zero ROM development is happening off of the official base on XDA - it's all AOSP-based or I9100 ports with i777 kernels, again based off of i9100 source.

If you want the latest OS updates, buy a Nexus device. I've had an Evo and now SGS2, and my next device will be an unlocked Nexus. Manufacturer updates, especially carrier-blessed versions, are very late and usually terrible.

Re:Waiting for 5 (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#40763265)

Carrier-blessed ROMs are harder to come by, but hardly Samsung's fault. They release stock firmware and the carriers add/modify. I don't know about the AT&T version, but there is still tons of development on XDA for the other SG2s. ICS ROMs based on stock (TouchWiz) and AOSP, and lots of great kernels that save battery and increase performance, and are stable... I jumped to ICS early and it was a little rocky for a couple of weeks, but it's been great since then. Hard to complain when I was putting custom ROMs on the phone and using early firmware. Now the phone is on ICS and is rock solid.

Re:Waiting for 5 (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#40763423)

You sound wishy-washy. Man up and make a decision. And quit whining.

Re:Waiting for 5 (1)

Bigbutt (65939) | about a year and a half ago | (#40763465)

I actually considered just fixing my screen as well (crack across the face too). The phone seems to work well enough and there's no problem in general with the software. Unfortunately with my wife leaving, I need to come up with a new contract for me and drop off hers. I just figure it's easier to drop me from the contract (she upgraded to a 4S last year) and start a new contract with a new phone. I am checking out what I might need to do to sever the contract or possibly just get a new contract with the same phone.

[John]

5 % is what, a few dollars ? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#40762847)

Who cares about 5 measly percent? You must be a daytardotrader to care about 5 measly percent.

The rot setting in? (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#40762855)

They miss their targets while their competitors (credible) competing products are banned? Wow, apple better pray the judges don't unban Samsungs products.

Re:The rot setting in? (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#40762917)

You are an idiot. Did you read the article or look at the numbers?. They missed analysts made up predictions (downwards) and their own predictions (upwards) Apple made 1.5 billion more than the same period last year.

The only rot that has set in is between your ears

Predictable product launch dates... (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#40762871)

They have predictable product launch dates, which is not a good thing in reality. Everyone and their mother knows with apple stuff you buy when it comes out since they never lower the price... Most products come out at a full MSRP then gradually drop in price to keep up demand. Well Apple doesn't do that, so people figure this out and buy when it comes out and the tech is newer/fresher since you pay the same as you would six months from now for the same tech. That with yearly product updates creates this seesaw pattern on sales. So they have two big products iPad and iPhone that all the iSheep. They separate those into two different quarters and those are going to be their best quarters, the other two will be weaker. Until they either come up with four killer products that everyone wants or come up with a better pricing/update strategy they are going to be stuck with this pattern. Blame the analysts for being too dumb to take this into account.

Re:Predictable product launch dates... (4, Insightful)

DrgnDancer (137700) | about a year and a half ago | (#40762985)

This isn't really a "problem", except in the eyes on a market focused on quarterly earnings. They make most of their money in the quarters they release a new phone or a new tablet. That doesn't mean they make less money overall, it just focuses when the majority of that money comes in. What's really insane is that not only did they make a shit pot of money this quarter, it's a much bigger shit pot than the same quarter last year. For some reason it's a "problem" that the shit pot is slightly smaller than some random guys who don't even work for the company sort of though it might be. This is rather like you winning a gold medal at the Olympics and me being upset with you because you didn't also set a world record in the process.

Re:Predictable product launch dates... (2)

gnasher719 (869701) | about a year and a half ago | (#40763099)

The "worst" thing is to release a new product 15 months after the previous new product. For example iPhone 5 fifteen months after iPhone 4S. So you have one quarter with sales going through the roof because of a new product, then four quarters later sales are quiet because everyone is waiting for the next great product.

Re:Predictable product launch dates... (2)

SJHillman (1966756) | about a year and a half ago | (#40763025)

A lot of Apple products (along with almost every other vendor) have issues when they first come out and you have to wait for the patches. Sure, it's generally still usable without the patch but some people will find software issues to be deal breakers. At my last job, we had iPhones for everyone who was on the road a lot. Stuff like wireless was hit and miss (especially before we finally upgraded away from WEP). For any product where software is a major selling factory (IE: iOS), I'll wait 6 to 12 months for them to get the worst of the bugs out unless I have a practical use for the absolute bleeding edge crap.

Re:Predictable product launch dates... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#40763657)

So to paraphrase: Your sole example of things that didn't work was that you were using WEP, a long-deprecated (as in it's fucking dead, Jim) standard, in a business environment. And you think the phone is the problem. SMH.

Didn't blame Samsung? (0)

Compaqt (1758360) | about a year and a half ago | (#40762937)

That's a surprise.

Mommy, mommy, I'm not the coolest kid in school anymore. Some guy who transferred in and eats kimchi [wikipedia.org] is wearing all-black jeans and a turtleneck. That's not fair. Black's my color! I thought of it first.

Re:Didn't blame Samsung? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#40763283)

They're not blaming Samsung, just cloning them: "thinner and larger" means morphing the iPhone into a Galaxy s2 or 3.

Has to happen eventually (2)

marcello_dl (667940) | about a year and a half ago | (#40762941)

IMHO even if the next iphone is cooler than the previous ones and the competition, there can't be the same amount of emotion over the arrival of a fifth generation of whatever product. The next big thing needs to be different enough from the current way of interacting with iphone and tablets. Apple will still be dominant because apple products say: "I can afford to spend more money than what's needed" and there's a market for that.

Re:Has to happen eventually (1)

SJHillman (1966756) | about a year and a half ago | (#40763041)

I think part of it is when some people start asking "What's the difference?". If Apple can't come up with a satisfactory answer for the not-quite-zombified portion of their customer base, a lot of them will jump ship for Something New - even if that Something New is the fifth generation of another company's product.

Re:Has to happen eventually (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#40763075)

Apple will still be dominant because apple products say: "I can afford to spend more money than what's needed" and there's a market for that.

Uh huh. Except for that pesky little fact of the iPhone 4S having the same cost on contract as an SG III?

Re:Has to happen eventually (1)

Darkness404 (1287218) | about a year and a half ago | (#40763251)

Um, let's see, the Galaxy S III was released first in late May/Early June. The iPhone 4S was released on October 14th 2011.

If Apple released the iPhone 4S-2 in June, yeah, it would be a fair comparison. But it isn't. A fair comparison would be between the Droid RAZR and the iPhone 4S. The Droid RAZR Maxx (as the first RAZR is no longer available, the Maxx being released just a few months later) sells for $99 on contract via Verizon, The iPhone 4S sells on contract for $200 via Verizon.

Re:Has to happen eventually (1)

quacking duck (607555) | about a year and a half ago | (#40763377)

Companies have a choice: do they prioritize unit sales (market share), or revenue/profit per unit?

Everyone else goes with the former, because margins are thin and there's little to distinguish competing units on the low end, so they need to pump up numbers.

Apple has always gone with the latter across all their product lines. You never see discounts on Apple stuff unless a new generation has replaced the old, or during rare events like the annual Black Friday sale. This does mean that sales will slow in the months leading up to an expected new generation; no one wants to pay full price for something a day before it's replaced with a newer model.

Re:Has to happen eventually (1)

oldlurker (2502506) | about a year and a half ago | (#40763123)

IMHO even if the next iphone is cooler than the previous ones and the competition, there can't be the same amount of emotion over the arrival of a fifth generation of whatever product. The next big thing needs to be different enough from the current way of interacting with iphone and tablets. Apple will still be dominant because apple products say: "I can afford to spend more money than what's needed" and there's a market for that.

It's not only that, but the coolness/fashion factor Apple has been riding is in danger of sliding over in having the opposite effect when every obnoxious tween and decidely uncool parents and grandparents has the latest iPhone..

Shouldn't they take this into account? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#40763007)

Surely if Apple know that they are releasing a new phone at a certain time, and based on previous releases there is a good chance that information about its release will be leaked, shouldn't they adapt their expectations for the preceding months accordingly?

Although saying that, Apple are probably so secretive that their accountants who produce these expectations probably have no idea when the next phone will be released either.

cor3k (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#40763029)

Flaws i8 the BSD

Seriously? This sounds like a broken record (4, Insightful)

UnknowingFool (672806) | about a year and a half ago | (#40763059)

I've heard these stories for years now. "Apple misses targets of financial analysts" except that the the last three words are often left out. They missed the targets of others for years and years with the iPod. If Apple made one gazillion dollars next quarter, the analysts would complain they didn't make two gazillion dollars. Apple themselves does not put out targets like this because the rampant speculation is bad enough now. Other companies also have to deal with analysts' expectations too.

Re:Seriously? This sounds like a broken record (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#40763239)

The fun thing about comments like yours is that they completely misunderstand the influence of analyst targets on prices. A company's stock price depends A LOT on its ability to generate *future* cash flows. Analysts try to estimate these cash flows and from that a 'fundamental' present value (and, say, estimated 12mo target) for the company. Many (institutional) investors depend on these projections to choose investments for a given return target. Now, if a company misses the analyst projected revenues, that has an immediate impact on the calculated 'fair value' of its stock. Which, in turn, gets reflected (rather quickly for heavily watched/invested companies) in actual stock price.

So yeah, missing analyst expectations matters. Besides, this was not a miss for some whacky out-of-tune-with-reality analysts, it was a miss on the average estimate.

Re:Seriously? This sounds like a broken record (2)

UnknowingFool (672806) | about a year and a half ago | (#40763485)

I don't doubt that analysts have impact. I question their accuracy. They are almost never right in their estimations. They miss obvious factors. For example, many of those analysts badly missed their targets for the iPad for Q2 2011. Almost none of them anticipated that after the holiday season and Apple drawing down inventory for the iPad 2 would mean lower sales even though these two events were obvious.

Re:Seriously? This sounds like a broken record (5, Interesting)

oldlurker (2502506) | about a year and a half ago | (#40763305)

Apple themselves does not put out targets like this because the rampant speculation is bad enough now.

Actually they do, Apple do give out specific guidance and forward looking statements to the financial markets on expected earning targets. For this Q3 Apple said they would be making $34b revenue, and they did $35b, similar for profit - so they beat their own targets.

But, the problem is that they have historically so consistently given guidance significantly below actual results, quarter after quarter, even very close to publishing the results (and enjoying all the "Apple crushing expectations again" headlines), so that when this time the gap between the Apple guidance and actual results were much much less, it was a negative surprise even to the people trying to listen to the guidance directly from Apple themselves.

Re: (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#40763107)

And rightfully so

With Steve Jobs Gone, Apple's Just Another Company (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#40763113)

I believe this will be the first of a whole new kind of progress report for Apple. I didn't really believe Steve Jobs was the mastermind behind the brand before he died, but since he's been gone the progress of the company feels like it's relying on inertia from days gone by...

I don't like Apple any more than I liked Microsoft in 2003, but I foresee a very near future where they are the underdog and people will be rooting for their comeback.

This is Samsung's fault. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#40763141)

Apple invented the smartphone and all these other foreign copycat companies are killing their market share. They should be stepping up their litigation to prevent these other 'smartphone' manufacturers from bringing their products into the country.You only need an iphone, nothing else is required.

A disappointment? For whom? (1)

dell623 (2021586) | about a year and a half ago | (#40763163)

Seriously, what are these analysts paid for. Anyone who knows the slightest bit about about what's happening in technology knows what's happening. The iPhone 5 doesn't even have a huge challenge. All they have to do is make the phone in a nicer metal body (liquid body) and maybe slimmer, which is one thing Apple can be depended on for, since their designs are industry leading. Make the screen a bit larger, make Siri a bit more functional, improve the camera a bit, and other iOS 6 features are coming anyway, put in a bigger battery, LTE, and NFC. This is all they need to do to make an absolute killing with the iPhone 5. This isn't a trivial industrial design challenge, but stuff Apple can do as a routine now. It is nothing like the quantum leap needed to launch the iPhone or the iPad. All the other pieces are in place. Their app ecosystem is in place, and thanks to Android fragmentation, the app experience with iOS apps is miles ahead of most Android apps. Only Samsung have the marketing and industry clout to take on Apple, but their design and development departments are far behind. It won't take much to make the SGS3 look plasticky and tacky in comparison, hell it already does. Whatever HTC do, they're too small to tale on carriers and market their products as Samsung and Apple are able to, which is why the superior HTC One X is getting trounced by the SGS3.
The iPad is still killing the tablet market, over two years after release. Making a successful 7" iPad is again absolutely trivial for Apple because they have a tablet app ecosystem to back them up that is miles ahead of Android, with the lead growing every day.
And a disappointment? It took Samsung two months to sell 10 million Galaxy S3, but Apple still sold 26 million iPhones in three months. This is before Apple even launches the next iPhone.
If I could, I would be buying up Apple stock like crazy.

Re:A disappointment? For whom? (1)

vlm (69642) | about a year and a half ago | (#40763269)

The iPad is still killing the tablet market, over two years after release.

One of the business analysts I was reading blamed the decline on the tablet market, apparently Apple is about to lose its majority position in the tablet market and margins on tablets have been declining. So... Smaller market share times fewer sold times less profit each equals big market decline. At least thats one interpretation.

Where's the new iMac? (2)

pastafazou (648001) | about a year and a half ago | (#40763181)

I was ready to plunk down roughly $2000 for a new iMac, and they didn't announce it. How many others were also waiting? I realize the iPhone has become the primary source of revenue for Apple, but the iMac still provides a significant amount of money and shouldn't be ignored. If Apple wants to position their products in the upper end of the market, they need to keep the technology inside on the cutting edge.

Re:Where's the new iMac? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#40763323)

yeah, i'm waiting for the new mac mini, it's too long into the release cycle to drop 1000 bucks on a loaded one when the next standard one probably will be as good as a maxed out one from the last cycle.

freelance (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#40763249)

just as Rose explained I didnt know that you able to profit $4638 in a few weeks on the computer. did you look at this web site http://nutshellurl.com/54oz

I thought Samsung was the reason Apple sales went (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#40763383)

I thought Samsung was the reason Apple sales went south. They said so themselves!

Analyst aren't paid to be realists (2)

anerki (169995) | about a year and a half ago | (#40763409)

Let's be clear about it. An analyst will say whatever he thinks will be accepted, so they can pretty much juggle with whatever figures and estimations they have, based on pretty much anything.

More importantly though, and this is becoming more and more rare among (especially big) companies: margin went up from 41.7 to 42.8 percent. The margin is already quite impressive, and they're becoming even more profitable.

http://www.apple.com/pr/library/2012/07/24Apple-Reports-Third-Quarter-Results.html [apple.com]

Other than that, revenue still went up, which is still quite remarkable, seeing as competitors are now becoming more and more active. 'Normal' people now know who Samsung is and what they do, instead of tablet computer = iPad. So ... meh ... don't believe the analysts, if we believed them, Apple would've died in 1996 (in 1997 they kicked out Gil Amelio and put Jobs as iCEO for the time being).

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