Apples manufacturing partners should fire up their iPhone assembly lines pronto. The sixth version of the iconic smartphonetentatively called the iPhone 5could have record sales in its future.
451 Research has reported that a recent ChangeWave survey found not only an uptick in planned consumer smartphone purchases this quarter, but an unprecedented level of advance demand for the next Apple iPhone.
The survey, of 4,042 consumers, 88 percent of whom were in the United States, took place June 18 to 25 and asked participants how likely they are to purchase the next iPhone.
But first, a teaser: ChangeWave performed a similar survey in October 2011, asking how likely participants were to buy what turned out to be the iPhone 4S. The results:
10 percent said they were "very likely" to buy the next iPhone
11.5 percent said they were "somewhat likely"
71.5 percent said they were "unlikely" to, and
7 percent said they didnt know.
Ultimately, Apple sold a record 37 million iPhones during the 2011 holiday quarter.
How do those figures stack up to the June findings? Of the most recent participants:
14 percent said they were "very likely to buy the iPhone 5
17 percent said they are somewhat likely
59 percent said they were unlikely, and
9 percent said they didnt know.
With consumers ready to spend, there seems to be plenty of sales to go around. A similar ChangeWave survey, pointed to by Apple Insider, found 19 percent of respondents in a June survey to say they planned on buying a Samsung smartphone in the next 90 days.
Samsung, two months after the launch of its Galaxy S III smartphone, has shared that it has already sold more than 10 million of the devices.
Strong worldwide demand for the phone has left Samsung struggling to keep up. The manufacturer signed agreements with five U.S. carriers, but devices were slow to arrive. Launching a month behind carriers in 28 other markets, T-Mobile kicked off its launch with limited options, while Sprint was left to apologize, saying overwhelming demand had left Samsung unable to deliver enough inventory to Sprint. Ten days later, the carrier finally began selling the phone.
AT&T and Verizon Wireless likewise wiggled the timeline for the phones availability.
Apple, ready to step up to the ever-increasing display sizes of its Android competitors, is rumored to have a larger displayat least 4 inches on the diagonalplanned for its next iPhone.
Other features that may sway consumers from somewhat to very likely include a super-thin profile, made possible by technology that integrates touch sensors into the LCD, eliminating the need for a touch-screen layer; a quad-core processor, a more-metal-less glass aesthetic, making it more resemble the iPad; potentially an upgradeable camera lens; Long-Term Evolution (LTE) 4G connectivity; near-field communication (NFC) technology; and a 19-pin port in exchange for the current 30-pin port.
The next iPhone is expected to receive an August introduction and launch in October, though Apple has characteristically been mum on the topic. The closest the industry has come to new news on this front was Verizon chief financial officer Fran Shammo, during the carriers July 19 earnings call, saying a big smartphone release was coming during the fourth quarter.