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20 Million iOS devices sold in about 2.5 months

On June 7th, 2010, at WWDC, Apple announced that they will have sold 100 million iOS devices some time during June 2010. Today, September 1st, Apple announced that 120 million iOS devices have been sold.

Assuming that 100 million was crossed half-way through June, then the additional 20 million units must have been sold during half of June, and all of July and August. That’s approximately 20 million over 75 days or 267k units per day.

Apple also announced that there are 230k new iOS activations per day which seems consistent given that they classify these as “new” activations.

There is one huge implication of this figure:  Forecasts for iPhone, iPad and iPods may be too low. I had forecast 20 million units for the entire quarter (12.1 million iPhones, 4 million iPads and about 4 million iPod touch). The iPhone figure assumed 65% y/y growth at that looks way too low. There is still another month in the quarter meaning that the total could be 30% too low.

I will be updating the forecast accordingly.

  • macorange

    You lost me. What is the difference between "new activations" and devices sold? Why isn't the total sold for the quarter nearly identical to the 20 million you forecasted earlier? Also, aren't there relatively more iPod touches sold in q4 because of the back to school promotion?

    • http://www.asymco.com asymco

      On second look, I revised my unit estimates to about 22 million for the quarter (10% increase). I'm keeping the iPod touch mix at slightly more than 40% of all units because of the refresh in the low end devices. Clearly touch could be 50% going forward.

      New estimates:
      4.5 million iPads
      13.6 million iPhones
      4 million iPod touch

      • http://lowendmac.com Tim Nash

        The iPod ASP in recent quarters suggests that touch sales are over 50% of iPod sales.

      • http://www.asymco.com asymco

        Could be. I'm increasing ASP to 170 for this Q, though back to school might offset most of the increase from new touch.

    • RattyUK

      That is the point. Google claim "activations" but don't explain it either. The only difference is that Jobs delineated the word activations with the word new meaning that that is 230k new devices a day whereas Google don't explain what the phrase means and are just implying sales.

      • Sevket Zaimoglu

        "Activation" in Google terminology means, the devices are not only sold to the end customer, but the customers have inserted SIM cards into these phones and have started using them. So it's an even more robust indicator of Android usage than just plain sales numbers.

        I have a friend who received an iphone 4 from O2 as a free upgrade. The friend was using a Nokia E series phone and he thought it would take him a couple of days to make the switchover to the iphone ecosystem, so he kept the phone in a drawer for more than a month. He started using it only when he went on holiday. So, from the sales perspective, he "bought" the phone in June, but he "activated" his new SIM card in July and really started using his iphone afterwards.

      • RattyUK

        "“Activation” in Google terminology means, the devices are not only sold to the end customer, but the customers have inserted SIM cards into these phones and have started using them. So it’s an even more robust indicator of Android usage than just plain sales numbers."

        You are firstly assuming sales = money to Google. This is not so. But you are telling me that an activation is a sale and then the insertion of the SIM card into the phone. Can you confirm that if that phone is sold on and someone puts a new sim card into it then re-activated then it is not counted again? Can you confirm that when you get a OS update it is not counted again as an Activation?

        "So, from the sales perspective, he “bought” the phone in June, but he “activated” his new SIM card in July and really started using his iphone afterwards."

        Save jobs was quoting activation figures. So I don't see how this is relevant other than to say that he didn't activate his phone until later. A purchaser of an Android device could have done the same thing.

  • Macorange

    We've heard that Apple was able to ramp up production of iPads this quarter, consistent with meeting US demand. So why not 5.5 ipads and 12.6 iPhones? Does it make much difference either way to your bottom line earnings for the quarter?

    • http://www.asymco.com asymco

      My estimate is that the iPhone will be priced at $638 and has a gross margin of 56%. The iPads will be priced at 660 and have a margin of 35%. So the contribution of the iPhone is $357 and for the iPad it's $231. Quite a difference. The iPad margin will increase over time and may settle around 40%.

  • Yes boss

    @Sevket Zaimoglu
    iOS activations are through Apple servers, so you can be sure that's pretty darn accurate.

    Also, they are able to tell if this is a new prchase or a SW upgrade

    • Sevket Zaimoglu

      I was merely commenting on what activation meant and argued that Google referring to activations was not a marketing trick. Never questioned the validity of Jobs' numbers. In any case, Jobs himself did not question Google's numbers either, since he specifically emphasized that 230k, Apple's daily activations number, was larger than 200k, Google's daily activations number.

      But then, on 24 May, Android stood at 100+k daily activations, Schimdt made his remark on August 4, which means the numbers doubled in about 70 days.