Apple Inc. could roll out its next iPhone a bit later than it typically does, according to a recent report from BofA Securities.

As the smartphone giant gears up for its next earnings report, Wall Street is eagerly awaiting the company’s outlook for the ongoing quarter, which typically features a few weeks’ worth of sales of the newest iPhone models. Apple’s
September-quarter forecast thus tends to provide a glimpse into the company’s expectations for the next iPhone cycle, and BofA analyst Wamsi Mohan thinks the upcoming forecast could reflect a delay in the iPhone 15’s launch timing.

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Apple’s forecasts are a bit harder to parse these days: The company hasn’t offered true quantitative financial guidance since the pandemic began, instead opting for vague commentary on expected relative performance. That said, Mohan thinks the company’s outlook may be affected by a delay of the iPhone 15 launch by “a few weeks,” something his industry checks suggest.

He is baking “minimal” sales of new iPhone 15 models into his overall September-quarter revenue projections, which now stand at $87.1 billion. The FactSet consensus is for $90.3 billion.

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Last year, the iPhone 14, iPhone 14 Pro and iPhone 14 Pro Max rolled out on Sept. 16, and the iPhone 14 Plus hit stores on Oct. 6. Apple didn’t immediately respond to a MarketWatch request for comment about the possibility of a launch delay.

Mohan noted that his forecast assumes a decline in revenue relative to the $90.1 billion seen in last year’s September quarter, while consensus expectations imply a small increase. He said that not only does Apple face the potential of a later iPhone launch relative to last year’s cadence, but the company is also dealing with broadly sluggish consumer demand.

“We expect every hardware category to be down” on a year-over-year basis in the June quarter, he wrote in a Wednesday note to clients, while in the September quarter, “the timing of launch of iPhone, tougher compares on Mac (easier on iPad) create a backdrop for product [revenues] to decline again.”

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Mohan has a neutral rating on Apple shares, although he lifted his price objective to $210 from $190 in Wednesday’s report.

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