WSJ: Apple’s iPhone 8 posts weak initial sales, pressuring iPhone X

“Apple Inc.’s iPhone 8 posted the weakest sales of any of the company’s new smartphones in recent years, according to estimates by two market research firms, raising the stakes for the higher-priced iPhone X as advance orders start on Friday,” Tripp Mickle reports for The Wall Street Journal.

“In the U.S., Apple’s largest market, the iPhone 8 and its larger 8 Plus version accounted for 16% of all iPhone sales in the September quarter, according to Consumer Intelligence Research Partners LLC,” Mickle reports. “By comparison, the iPhone 7 and 7 Plus accounted for 43% during the same period last year and the iPhone 6s and 6s Plus accounted for 24% during the same period in 2015. Other signs indicate similar underperformance globally.”

“Soft iPhone 8 sales stem partly from confusion over the trio of phones Apple is releasing this year,” Mickle reports, “and could reflect buyers waiting for the iPhone X, which boasts an edge-to-edge display and facial-recognition technology.”

MacDailyNews Take: Gee, ya think?

“Many consumers have decided the improvements in the iPhone 8 are too incremental to justify the higher price tag and instead opted to buy cheaper, older models or wait for the iPhone X, said Mike Levin and Josh Lowitz, co-founders of Consumer Intelligence Research Partners. ‘They signaled to their customers: Don’t buy the 8. Their customers listened,’ Mr. Lowitz said,” Mickle reports. “As of a month after it started shipping, the iPhone 8 and 8 Plus combined accounted for 2.4% of iPhones in use world-wide, according to market research firm Localytics, which analyzed data from more than 70 million Apple devices. That was less than half the share claimed by its predecessors, the iPhone 7 and 7 Plus, a month after they started shipping, and the lowest for a new iPhone since at least 2014, the firm said.”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: Transparently faux “concern” designed to depress Apple’s share price.

It’s at least as tiring as it is profitable.

Thanks to WSJ et al. for the AAPL sale!

As per judging a book by its cover: Apple's iPhone 8 offers the A11 Bionic chip, Wireless Qi charging, capacity up to 256GB, True Tone display, Apple’s Neural engine, an embedded M11 motion coprocessor, Portrait Lighting, 24/30/60 fps 4K video recording, Dolby Vision and HDR10 support, and fast-charge capability, to mention ten (10) significant enhancements over iPhone 7.

As we wrote a month ago: Let’s allow the entire iPhone family to be on the market, around the world, for some time before we judge the iPhone mix… Some people will (think they) want the Home button and Touch ID. Many millions worldwide will be swayed by iPhone 8/Plus’ lower prices and promotions relative to iPhone X. Apple is usually close to dead on with pricing. Promotions are another variable. This one is tricky, but we wouldn’t bet against Apple on this.

First month of iPhone 8/Plus adoption shows Apple’s latest iPhones are actually selling well – October 24, 2017
Why is anyone surprised by poor iPhone 8 sales? – October 23, 2017
Apple stock drops after Rogers CEO says iPhone 8/Plus demand ‘anemic’ – October 19, 2017
Jim Cramer: The action in Apple’s stock is a lesson on buying into weakness – October 17, 2017
Analyst: Apple’s iPhone 7 is outselling iPhone 8 – October 16, 2017
More people want Apple’s most expensive iPhone X than iPhone 8 or 8 Plus – October 3, 2017
Ars Technica reviews Apple’s iPhone 8 and 8 Plus: Great phones, but who are they for? – September 28, 2017
Apple’s iPhone X kills iPhone 8 and exposes Cook & Co.’s risky gamble – September 26, 2017
Positive reviews for Apple’s iPhone 8/Plus and iOS 11 bode well for the iPhone X – September 19, 2017
Wired reviews Apple’s iPhone 8 and 8 Plus: Virtually perfect phones – and yet already obsolete – September 19, 2017
Associated Press reviews iPhone 8/Plus: Like flying in coach versus first class iPhone X – September 19, 2017
USA Today’s Baig reviews iPhone 8/Plus: Excellent iPhones overshadowed by iPhone X – September 19, 2017
Apple’s A11 Bionic chip is by far the highest-performing system on the market; totally destroys Android phones – September 19, 2017
Apple’s A11 Bionic chip in iPhone 8, 8 Plus, and iPhone X leaves Android phones choking in the dust – September 18, 2017
The inside story of Apple’s amazing A11 Bionic chip – September 18, 2017
Apple’s A11 Bionic obliterates top chips from Qualcomm, Samsung and Huawei – September 18, 2017
Apple accelerates mobile processor dominance with A11 Bionic; benchmarks faster than 13-inch MacBook Pro – September 15, 2017
Apple’s A11 Bionic chip in iPhone X and iPhone 8/Plus on par with 2017 MacBook Pro – September 14, 2017


  1. Apple screwed up on this one. Other than wireless charging the 7 works fine so the incremental improvements on 8 is a yawn. Worse though was why would anyone would buy it until they see the X. I agree with one thought, the 8 will do much better after trier-rejectors look at the X and decide against it. But, hard pressed to understand this go-to-market strategy from a consumer perspective. Could have been internal supply chain reasons for doing this at the same time. Regardless Apple will keep humming along in the Mobile business because the eco-system is highly beneficial and unique to the brand.

    1. The iPhone 8 is really a iPhone 7S type update. Those “S” updates have always done fine for people who like to wait for the “refined” version of The iPhone, and there are a lot of people on the 2 year “S” cycle. This year the incremental updaters had a choice to wait a little longer for a better update. I dont fault Apple for doing the 8, as alot of people like the 7 form factor- if they had called it the 7s there wouldnt be so much discussion. Keep in mind, most of us are Techies. I have 2 non-techie friends who told me how pleased they were to get their “new” iPhone 7 last week.

    2. “Worse though was why would anyone would buy it until they see the X”
      Cost. The X is $800 with carrier subsidy where I live. I’m not fool enough to fork out that much cash for a phone that isn’t really that much different from my 6S, just a bigger screen in similar form factor (barring the bezel). Don’t care about face ID etc.
      I’d rather fork out that same cash on an iPad Pro, or an iPad 9.7 AND and iPhone 8.

  2. I think the 8 is great. After looking at the compromises that come with a bezeless screen, I’m thinking maybe these bezels aren’t so bad afterall. And with the new glass back, I’ll still be able to lay my phone, AirPods and Apple Watch on the AirPower charging pad they’re releasing next year.

    Yeah, I think I’m going iPhone 8.

    1. They could *easily* have avoided the notch at the top with a thin non-screen strip at top with the sensors, and a thin non-screen strip at the bottom that housed forward-facing speakers. No it wouldn’t be “edge to edge” screen but neither is the X, and forward speakers would’ve fixed the problem where no matter how good the speakers are, they’re still shooting sound off to the side instead of at the person watching a video on-screen.

  3. Apple now have the broadest range of iPhone offerings to cater to anyone’s budget. This will also push the ASP further higher as a lot of customers are waiting for the iPhone X.
    The hardest part will be getting enough iPhone X models made and into the hands of customers in the next 2 months.

  4. The bitching about the notch is just asinine. There’s nothing wrong with it. It leaves room to move the status bar up and out of the way. It also provides three distinct areas for a down swipe.

    The only problem I have is Apple allowing video playback to run into the “ears” on either side of the notch.. it’s dumb… it literally covers up part of the image! Why? They should just keep it for their use only – maybe a “blurred” effect as content scrolls underneath, as is done with window title bars in macOS. Otherwise it should be blacked out when video or images go “full” landscape.

    Other than though, I like the notch. It adds a very distinctive design element that allows the iPhone to once again stand out from other phones that all basically look the same.

    1. The status bar is now half the size then and you’ve gained a status bars worth of extra space. Wow! The only reason for the notch is so they can say the screen goes to all the corners. When used in landscape you effectively have an artificial bezel. From a design point of view it looks awful. You would never dream of putting a notch in if you didn’t need the space for something else. It is a compromise. Nothing more, nothing less. Personally I think it’s a compromise too far. I don’t care about the screen going tall corners.

    2. Michael: you must not be trained in art/design or use your right brain very often to laud Apple’s “N” as a “distinctive design element.” In the visual field, “distinctive” design elements are desired, but it’s also to be linked to adjectives that show said element works, supports, facilitates the item as designed. Merely lauding an objects design for being distinctive would enable putting MS’s Zune in this category b/c of the “distinctive” brown chassis. Even in your “defense” you propose the “N” allows for a swipe down area. We’ve had 10 years of fine Apple phones and the “Anniversary iPh” needs such an area? When design is justified/rationalized in such a way, it exemplifies that the design has holes & can’t stand on it’s own. The “only” problem you have yourself is Huge….it’s THE image bearing medium for the device and it’s doing so in a distracted, partial and compromised way. You say in response; “It should be….” Again, you’re own words point to the compromise.
      This entire discussion is interesting as one side can’t seem to handle the criticism re: the “N” and the other side, thinks is a clear fail and inconsistent with Apple’s tradition. Every time, I mean every time someone from “the other side” comments about it, they’re obviously not trained/travelled in the art/design realm and in the attempt to defend the “N,” they eat their own words…when it comes to art/design tenants. Every time.

  5. Well as we often talk about here Apple makes “premium devices at premium prices for premium customers.” Most iPhone users won’t bat an eye at waiting for an iPhone X and it’s additional expense. Premium is as premium does.

    If you have an iPhone 7 Plus like me there’s not as great a sense of urgency about the iPhone 8 or 8 Plus. But for those of us on Apple iPhone yearly update plan, well, why WOULDN’T you wait for an iPhone X?

    See you at the Apple App Store late tonight and may the best guy or gal win getting an early ship date.

  6. The point of the notch is so you can have the status fieldsie signal strength etc in that area
    This leaves more space in vertical view for the main content.
    All the hullabaloo has been about the landscape mode where the notch is very prominent when viewing video. Simply making the oled area black when in landscape will remove the issue. I bet the final phone will have sorted that out.

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