UBS: Mac momentum continues building, Apple could sell 10 million iPods in holiday quarter

“Apple could sell more than 10 million iPods during the three month period ending in December, says UBS Investment Research,” Apple Insider reports. “UBS had been modeling Apple to sell 8.3 million iPods in the December quarter, but recently met with industry sources in Asia who said those estimates may prove to be conservative… Analyst Ben Reitzes… also believes Apple may produce a new hard disk drive (HDD)-based iPod before the end of the year. ‘Our checks back recent reports that a handheld device capable of video playback could be in the works,’ the analyst said. ‘We would expect possible new devices to be HDD-based and look a bit like a larger white iPod with a bigger color screen.'”

Apple Insider reports,”UBS also said it sees momentum building for Apple’s portables and iMacs: ‘Our checks in Asia back this view, implying that sales of portables for Apple (particularly iBooks) are solid, which could make our estimates for overall Mac growth of 41% in 4Q05 and 28% in 1Q06 look conservative,’ the firm said.”

Full article here.

Last Monday, Citigroup Analyst Richard Gardner predicted 10 million iPod nano units alone would sell in 2005, as he wrote in a note to clients, “Supply chain checks suggest that Apple should be able be to produce 10 million iPod nanos before the end of the calendar year, and given the strong initial customer reception to the product, we think these units will sell through.”

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Related articles:
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UBS raises target price on Apple Computer, says iPod nano could be ‘key product’ into 2006 – September 26, 2005
Apple Computer shares hit all-time high, top $54 in early trading – September 26, 2005
Bear Stearns: ‘We see Apple making further PC share gains,’ raises price target to $58 – September 23, 2005
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Banc of America reiterates ‘buy’ rating on Apple, raises target price and EPS estimates – September 22, 2005
Deutsche Bank predicts Apple will sell 43 million iPods in 2006 – September 21, 2005
Apple shares up strongly, hit new all-time high on report of better than expected Mac sales – September 20, 2005
Morgan Stanley sets price target of $60 for Apple, AC Research reiterates ‘accumulate’ rating – September 09, 2005
Apple Computer shares hit all-time high, top $50 in early trading; analysts up target prices – September 08, 2005
Apple continues to grow worldwide Macintosh market share – July 25, 2005
Gartner: Apple grows shipments 31 percent in Q2 2005, moves from 5th to 4th in U.S. market share – July 18, 2005
IDC: Apple gains U.S. market share at double overall market rate, up to 4.5 percent for Q2 2005 – July 18, 2005


  1. It amazes me how pervasive the iPod is.

    High School kids love ’em
    College kids love ’em
    New York business people love ’em
    Snow Boarders love ’em

    And every time Apple sells one, it makes it harder and harder for record companies to turn their backs on iTMS.

    MDN word: already

  2. Whoa, that’s a little crazy. 10 million Nano’s! How many Shuffle’s and full iPod’s? Seems a little ambitious to think that Apple could double the iPod total from last quater. I’d love to see it happen, but perhaps we should be a little more conservative on this one.

  3. They’ll sell more than 10 million iPods in the December quarter. I’d bet that it’ll probably be 12-14 million total including all models. What I haven’t seen are estimates for the quarter that just ended last Friday. I guess we’ll know for sure when Apple reports in about 2 weeks.

  4. If Apple sold 6 million last quarter and probably 8 million this quarter, I find it hard to believe that they will only sell 10 million over the Xmas period.

    Considering that the retail channel will be fully loaded with ipods for the whole quarter and that Apple have likely ensured that supply can meet demand, the 12-14 million estimate makes more sense to me.

  5. Apple should be capable of moving anywhere between 12.5 and 15.0 million iPods during Q1/06 – I would tend to say that the mix will be something like 8 million nanos, 4 million “classics” and 3 million shuffles – which would generate around $3.445 billion in sales and around $550 million in gross profit.

    The key is to see how many iPods they shift in the next set of quarterly results: typically, the unit sales in Q1 seem to be around 2.1 – 2.2 times the sales in the preceding quarter, so if Apple shifts 7 million units for the quarter just ended you can look forward to around 15 million units for the holidays.

    The interesting thing will be to see what happens to the average cost//unit in the holiday quarter: these figures have been declining ever since I’ve been keeping records – from $327 for Q2/04 to $179 for Q3/05. The nano will hopefully bring that figure back up to around $230 before deflation again starts to take the figure down to around $200 for the dog-days of 2006.

  6. Eco:

    Go and post the same thing on a mobile phone website: they easily sell 10 times as many units every quarter and are far more prone to being considered disposable, as opposed to iPods which tend to stock around for a while because they’re not subsidised by the networks.

  7. Eco:
    Also, mp3 players that use disposable/non rechargeable AA and AAA batteries create far more hazardous waste than a rechargeable battery product. A bigger issue than batteries is the metals and toxic material in the cell phones and computer parts that are dumped every year. Or exported as hazardous waste to third world countries for processing in unsafe conditions. (the United States refused to sign a treaty against the export of hazardous waste). Since Apple uses rechargeable batteries in iPods, and produces computers that stay in use for longer than average, the environmental impact is lessened.
    Ever stop to think how many batteries are thrown out in a year? In my city they are not even allowed in the regular trash.

  8. Eco:

    Consider too that the iPod batteries are not consumer replacable. Wheile that may be inconvenient to the owner, most owners will take their iPod to some sort of service center to have the battery replaced. Those service centers are much more likely to dipose (recycle) the batteries in an environmentally sound manner.

    So maybe there was a method to Apple’s madness.

    Of course with the breakneck speed of technological advancemnet, many old iPods will wind up collecting dust until they are just thrown out, adding the batteries and the elctronics to the waste stream. (Think of all those Palms that everyone had but no longer uses)

    So I guess we should all amuse ourselves with biodegradable bamboo flutes and the like.

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