Comprehensive and thoughtful review of the performance of the analyst cohorts in predicting Apple’s quarter:
By Daniel Tello’s ranking I was first in Q2 but 8th (out of 38) in Q3. Overall, bloggers beat Pros but by a lower margin than in the past.
I have been ok at estimating product line performance and top line sales but not so good in guessing margins. Last quarter I went for a high iPhone number (13 million vs 14.1 actual and 11.39 Pro/12.07 Blogger consensus) and middle-of-pack on iPads (5 million vs. 4.2 actual and 4.79 Pro/5.52 Blogger consensus). The total iOS units I forecast was 18 million and Apple sold 18.3 so I was fine on units and pricing.
My guess on the cause of my estimate failure on margins was iPhone 4 rollout ramp. I had to take iPhone margin down to below 50% (about 49%) to make the reported total GM. iPhone has been, on average, running at 52% over the life of the product.
PED’s rankings are here.