With Apple’s announcement of fantastically hot iPhone 3G sales that helped boost the company to the No. 3 global smartphone vendor position, you’d think that Apple would be pumping out iPhone 3G units like mad for the holiday shopping season. Think again.
According to a new report from Friedman Billings Ramsey analyst Craig Berger. Citing “recent checks” on the chip industry that supplies critical components for Apple’s iPhone 3G, Berger says that iPhone 3G production may pull back by 40% in Q4 2008 – otherwise known as the holiday shopping season. The report falls in line with other industry speculation that Apple would throttle down its iPhone 3G production rates.
To be clear, any production slowdown on Apple’s part doesn’t directly correlate to reduced demand or a reduction in iPhone 3G shipments this quarter. The reduced production, compared to the previous quarter, could simply be the result of iPhone 3G surplus already in-channel.
On the other hand, economic stresses could be projected to make a big enough dent in high-end consumer electronics sales that Apple is hedging its bets and preventing a serious stock over-suppy that would leave them scrambling to sell units.
A production cutback could also signal Apple’s move to divert resources into developing a refreshed iPhone 3G with higher display resolution and expanded storage – the iPhone HD. Of course, that’s entirely speculation…