“Gene Munster, one of Wall Street’s most respected and notable analysts who covers Apple Inc., left his position at Piper Jaffray to start a venture capital firm that focuses on virtual reality and artificial intelligence,” Jayson Derrick reports for Benzinga.

“Munster’s new firm, Loup Ventures, released on Tuesday a preview of Apple’s December 2016 ending quarterly results, to be reported on January 31,” Derrick reports. “The analyst turned fund manager reaffirmed his prior view that he remains positive on Apple’s story and expects the company to advance its lead in artificial intelligence-enabled devices with its next iPhone device, which will likely be named the iPhone X.”

“For the December 2016 ending quarter, Munster now expects Apple’s iPhone shipments to grow by 4 percent year-over-year to 78 million units,” Derrick reports. “He continued that Apple’s December quarter ending guidance didn’t factor in the iPhone reaching equilibrium and estimates at that time called for Apple to ship 77 million iPhone units.”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: Apple’s all-time iPhone unit sales record was set during 2015’s holiday quarter (Apple’s fiscal Q116) at 74.779 million units.