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Wednesday, 09 October 2013 09:56

Three weeks on, how is the iPhone 5C doing?

Written by Peter Scott

Mixed feelings

Last week a number of huge US retailers slashed the price of the iPhone 5C, prompting many observers to conclude that the unapologetically plastic iPhone isn’t selling well. While this might be the case, it’s not uncommon for retailers to offer discounts even on new products and it’s no indication of soft demand.

Information is still sketchy and over the past few days we’ve read a number of conflicting reports on iPhone 5C sales. According to research firm Canaccord Genuity, the iPhone 5C is doing just fine, as it’s among the top three best selling phones on all four major US networks, while the iPhone 5S tops the rankings.

However, Pacific Crest analyst Andy Hargreaves reports that the iPhone 5C is not doing well in Asia. During his tour of China, he says he saw plenty of iPhone 5C inventory, while the 5S was a bit harder to find. So far, China seems to be loving the iPhone 5S a bit more.

Over the weekend uswitch.com said it was seeing a lot more demand for the iPhone 5S and even the venerable 4S than the new 5C. In fact, the good old iPhone 4S outsold the 5C by 30 percent since the new phone hit the UK market last month.

We checked iPhone 5S/5C availability in Europe as well, and as far as retail goes, the iPhone 5C is a lot easier to come by. It is available in dozens of shops and e-tail outfits, whereas the 5S is almost impossible to get if you’re not going for a carrier deal. What’s more, the old iPhone 5 still appears to be selling well, so it might be dragging iPhone 5C sales down.

Still, from a business perspective Apple should have no trouble making a pretty penny on the new iPhones. Both the 5C and 5S carry a slightly lower BOM than the iPhone 5 when it launched last year and as a result Apple’s margins should go up.

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