Analysts: Apple’s iPhone price cuts in China provided only temporarily improved sales

“Apple’s attempts to boost its iPhone sales in China via price cuts offered only a temporary effect, according to Rosenblatt Securities, with post Chinese New Year sales reportedly seeing little in the way of improvement in a depressed smartphone market,” Malcolm Owen reports for AppleInsider. “”

“Apple took advantage of the Chinese New Year to offer significant price cuts on the iPhone, a move that seemed to have worked. Between January 11 and January 30, Apple product sales reportedly rose 83 percent, with retailer Tmall seeing a 76 percent surge in sales during that time,” Owen reports. “According to analysts from Rosenblatt Securities in an investor note seen by AppleInsider, the boost is short-lived. ‘After analyzing recent data points from Chinese retail channels, we believe price cuts provided little benefit to iPhone sales in the Chinese market,'” wrote Rosenblatt analyst Jun Zhang.”

Owen reports, “The temporary benefit of the sale was also noticed by analysts at UBS on Thursday, which noted the price adjustments are ‘not yet having much positive impact on iPhone units.'”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: A price cut is not going to permanently fix the lengthening iPhone cycle in China or anywhere else. One would expect a temporary boost in sales as those who were on the fence jumped off for a new iPhone at a lower price. Once you pick the lower hanging fruit the others remain (lengthening cycle). Apple simply has to bite the bullet and get settled into the new, longer replacement cycle which used to be ~28 months in 2015 is now at least 36 months and maybe even approaching 48 months on average.


  1. Typical knee jerk reaction by Cook, even though he’s had years to build entry level products for developing markets. On the way to doing his job, apparently greed got in the way.

  2. Apple has never sold anything cheaply. ever. They’ve always been priced higher than most all their competition on everything they sell.. You can call it greed, but its always been that way..

  3. I am tired of the complainers, always second guessing using hindsight and gut feel.

    For many years, Apple has done a fantastic job of maintaining a tight and flexible supply chain to address surges and declines. Apple keeps its inventory small, using a close to just-in-time manufacturing flow to satisfy product demand. As a result, Apple can adjust to this shift with relatively little impact in terms of losses from markdowns of surplus inventory. That does not mean that the decline won’t hurt, but at least it isn’t going to be stacked on top of tens of millions in inventory that has to be pushed out the door at a big loss.

    Apple has ridden the smartphone wave – the wave that it pretty much started – with great success. And I have no doubt that Apple will find a way to continue to be successful in a mature smartphone market that no longer grows ten or twenty percent, YoY. Apple will find ways to maintain or even grow its marketshare while also finding new opportunities in other areas.

  4. “UBS on Thursday…noted the price adjustments are ‘not yet having much positive impact on iPhone units.’”

    Un-huh. And how, exactly would UBS have any idea of how many units were sold?

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