“After Apple Inc. unveiled iPhone 4, industry analysts said they expect the newest version of the smartphone to bring in new users and lead current customers to upgrade, as well as add to Apple’s profit margins in the coming months,” Rex Crum reports for MarketWatch.
“Apple Chief Executive Steve Jobs unveiled the iPhone 4 at the company’s developers conference on Monday. The devices can be ordered beginning June 15 and go on sale June 24 in the U.S. at $199 for a model with 16 gigabytes of storage and $299 for a 32-gigabyte model,” Crum reports. “Apple also cut the prices on its current iPhones, lowering the iPhone 3GS to $149 and $199 and the iPhone 3G to $99.”
“The new iPhone comes with more than 100 new features, with a video-calling function called FaceTime being the one that has garnered attention as an example of where smartphones are headed in the future,” Crum reports. “Keith Bachman, of BMO Capital Markets, said he believes FaceTime ‘is a game changer and must-have feature that could provide huge upgrade potential,’ as it works only on the iPhone 4. Bachman said that if even 20% of the approximate 50 million installed iPhone users upgrade to iPhone 4, Apple should meet his forecasts for 10.2 million iPhone sales in the September quarter and 12.2 million in the last three months of the year. Bachman maintained his outperform rating and $310-a-share price target on Apple’s stock.”
“Analyst Robert Cihra, of Caris & Co., raised his target price on Apple to $325 a share from $310 and left his buy rating unchanged,” Crum reports. “Cihra called the iPhone 4 ‘one of the three big iCatalysts’ for Apple, in addition to the ongoing growing demand for the iPad and what he sees as, ultimately, a CDMA iPhone for Verizon Wireless.”
Crum reports, “Shaw Wu, an analyst with Kaufman Bros., said that following the iPhone 4’s debut, he believes the response could be strong enough to exceed his own conservative forecasts for iPhone sales. Wu, who holds a buy rating and $320-a-share price target on Apple’s stock, currently estimates that Apple will sell 8.5 million iPhones in the June quarter, 37 million for this year and 43 million in 2011.”
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