Channel check suggests seasonally soft quarter for Mac, iPod; limited Apple TV interest

Apple Store“Thomas Weisel Partners comments on Apple after completing a round of 30 channel checks with Apple specialist resellers and Apple retail stores across the United States. Firm’s checks suggest seasonally soft quarter for Mac and iPod, which is not surprising given normal seasonal demand trends,” Notable Calls reports.

“TWP believes that, on a sequential basis, Mac units will likely decline in mid-single-digit area, but possibly be ahead of the Street assumptions on a revenue basis (they are at $5.39bn in total revenue versus Street at $5.17bn),” Notable Calls reports.

Notable Calls reports, “iPod nano still a dominant MP3 player, but checks suggest seasonal drop-off in demand compared with very strong December quarter: Again, not surprising and consistent with expectations of a 48% q/q decline in units. 4GB iPod nano remains the best-selling iPod, and Apple continues to outsell competition by 8:1 ratio.”

“Checks indicate limited interest in iTV [Apple TV]thus far. Firm does not view this product as a large opportunity, as they believe there are less than 6mn PVR-type devices sold in the marketplace annually at present,” Notable Calls reports.

Notable Calls reports, “Firm believes the growth opportunities continue to be strong for Apple, but that those opportunities appear to be well understood by the investment community and, thus, reflected in the current stock price. Maintains Mkt Weight rating.”

More details in the full article here.

Related articles:
Analyst: Mac sales growth continues to exceed rate of PC sales growth – March 30, 2007
NPD data shows Mac sales growing 5x market growth rate in February – March 29, 2007
PiperJaffray checks show Apple Mac sales likely to beat estimates this quarter – March 20, 2007
NPD: Mac sales grew 108% in January – March 01, 2007
Prudential ups Apple Inc. estimates on strong Mac sales, margins – February 21, 2007
RUMOR: Apple TV sales blowing away Apple’s internal expectations – January 25, 2007


  1. Seems like a very reasonable assessment. However, not quoted by MDN but in the article is this bit…

    “I continue to be cautious on AAPL and still think it’s a short around current levels.”

    It’s risky business to short AAPL. You never know what Jobs will pull out of his hat next.

  2. Apple TV is over priced and the hard drive capacity is too low. They should have made it a 250GB hdd, full 3.5″ size to keep cost down and made it replaceable by the customer as well as turned on that USB port for external HDD storage capacity. ” width=”19″ height=”19″ alt=”wink” style=”border:0;” />

  3. TV is not a pvr, therefore does not need to have a large hd. It’s for streaming video. You can place your photos on it however.

    It will be interesting to see what the release of Adobe products does for Mac sales between now and the 15th.

  4. Of course sales this quarter are softer than the last quarter. Christmas shopping happened last quarter, not this.

    The author is a hit generating jerk. AAPL moves in direct relationship to management’s guidance. Management guided lower at the January conference call. The time to short AAPL was the morning after the conference call, not now.

    My personal estimate for March quarter earnings is 74¢, with management guidance for the June quarter 70¢. That guidance represents a 25% increase over guidance given last January. A 25% increase in guidance is going to cause AAPL to boounce significantly the day after the April conference call.

    Beware the analyst that posts contrarian “research notes”. They are trying to manipulate the stock lower so clients can jump in at a lower price.

  5. …Although I am definitely look forward to Apple TV. Either that or I just keep using Tivo or something. I have all my favorite shows and movies already stored and connected to my TV readily available for access though.

  6. Tonight my wife and I caught up on BSG, Boston Legal and CSI. We sat in our kitchen and watched it on my Mac’s 17″ screen. While we did that I seriously contemplated if $299 was worth the ability to watch it on the comfy chairs in the living room with superior sound in comparison to the computer speakers (JBL Creature). Right now it’s not. There’s no iTunes content available outside the USA and my EyeTV only records in 640×480 which looks like crap on the big 27″ TV. So, I’m going to have to wait to see if more features are enabled with the release of Leopard to make it worth the price.

    There is a point where a device becomes too minimalistic and therefore doesn’t have enough to convince the customer to purchase. Judging by the sales numbers, I suspect most prospective buyers feel the way I do.

  7. Quite frankly i dont see a lot of consumers buying the TV because it doesnt play TV…. which despite Apples marketing etc won’t be known to them till they walk into the store and ask… they will then be disappointed and not buy it.

    I realise it wouldve cost more for them to do, but would it have really been that hard to put a decent hard drive in and a HD tuner?

    MCE is too complicated for the masses, if apple did it in true apple style they would have had a much bigger seller in my opinion.

  8. The big news on Apple TV is not what what it is today. Currently it is a good product for the small target audience. What’s great about Apple TV is what it will be in the future.
    The OS and UI are built, all Apple needs to do now is figure out what the everyone else wants Apple TV to be (for me, it’s the ability to record TV shows) and build it without alienating the movie studios Apple is currently trying to court.

    Steve seems like he takes his time when we are impatiently waiting for something, but it will come eventually.

    What were we talking about again?
    MW – change

  9. Apple may be slightly ahead of the curve with the Apple TV, but the whole market has to go this way. Broadcast television is already dead; they just haven’t buried it yet. When the content starts catching up, and customers start catching on, Apple will be right there in the middle of the great unfolding.

  10. I think some of the reason for low sales is that a lot of people, me included, are waiting for Leopard to come out before purchases. Surely sales after Leopard will see a jump that will be higher than the similar quarter last year. If Apple gave the rebate for student purchases this upcoming fall and had a new widescreen ipod I would be sorely tempted to buy one. There reason sales are low I think, well part of the reason, is that people are delaying purchases for big news.

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