Motorola released Droid X a day before Apple’s iPhone 4 went to sale in a bid to thwart attention from iPhone 4. If the first day’s estimated sales of iPhone 4 are anything to go by, then Motorola’s ploy failed miserably.
Evidently Apple’s magic still has a hold over smartphone consumers. The iPhone juggernaut seems to be on a roll and no one is capable enough to stop it for now it seems.
Once again long queues at Apple and AT&T stores were the norm of the day when Apple’s iPhone 4 went on sale. There were reported waits of upto eight hours in line to get the iPhone 4. So invigorating is the iPhone 4 mania that people were willing to wait that long just to get their beloved iPhone. Judging by this scenario, it would not be presumptuous to say that Apple is in for a big bounty.
Apple has as yet not announced the official sales numbers. Wall Street analysts did some extrapolation based on interviews with customers at stores around the U.S. Thursday. Oppenheimer’s Yair Reiner estimated that Apple may have sold more than 1.5 million iPhone 4s till date.
He arrived at the figure by adding the 600,000 preordered units Apple announced last week, plus estimating 100,000 units sold to walk-in customers (guessing an average of 500 per store), 50,000 units sold to Best Buy (about 45 per store), and then doubling that number to include international sales.
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As Apple does not publicist the number of units distributed to each store, it is difficult to determine the accuracy of the numbers estimated by Reiner. Apple might release the numbers on Friday or like in the past wait till Monday to announce its total four day sales total. Apple sold 1 million iPhone 3G units in the first weekend it went on sale in 2008, and 1 million iPhone 3GS units during its first weekend available in 2009.
Piper Jaffray analyst Gene Munster, conducted a sort of poll among the people standing in queue outside the stores and on the basis of the poll estimates that 77 percent of people buying a phone yesterday were previously iPhone owners and were upgrading.
“We spoke with 608 people in line for the iPhone 4 (Thursday) in San Francisco, Minneapolis, and New York.,” Munster wrote in a research note Friday. “The bottom line: 77 percent of new iPhone buyers were existing iPhone owners (upgrades), compared to 56 percent in 2009, and 38 percent in 2008.
Apple is effectively building a recurring revenue stream from a growing base of iPhone users that upgrade to the newest version every year or two.”