Apple Watch Series 4 & iPhone XS Max Pre-Orders Exceeding Expectation, XS Demand Lackluster, AirPower Might Be Dead

With all the excitement about the iOS 12 release yesterday it’s sometimes easy to forget that there are new hardware releases happening this coming Friday, with the iPhone XS, iPhone XS Max, and Apple Watch Series 4 all set to go on sale.

Pre-orders went up last week, and according to Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo, first-weekend pre-orders may not have gone the way some might have expected.

According to Kuo, the Apple Watch Series 4 “sold better than expected” thanks to its new health-related functionality such as ECG monitoring and the first real chassis redesign since the watch’s first outing. As a result, Kuo predicts that Apple WAtch shipments will reach 18m during 2018 with the Apple Watch Series 4 accounting for up to 55% of that number.

However, the iPhone XS appears to be doing worse than expected, with customers apparently opting to go for the larger iPhone XS Max or waiting out for the colorful iPhone XR. The move to the Max will no doubt please Apple, rather than worry it, thanks to the increased price of that device but if users are switching from the $999 iPhone XS to the $749 iPhone XR, that could well be an issue for iPhone average order value. As a result of this Kuo lowered his forecast for iPhone XS orders to just 10-15%, down from an initial 15-20%. As for the iPhone XS Max, that’s performing just as strong as expected.

There is strong Chinese demand thanks to the gold casing, dual-SIM, and large display. The XS Max average shipping time is shorter than the 2H17 iPhone X (1–2 weeks vs. 2–3 weeks), which we think is due to supply improvements. We maintain our forecasts that the XS Max will account for 25–30% of 2H18 new iPhone model shipments.

As for devices that Apple has yet to get out the door, the unreleased AirPower charging pad has had plenty of attention lately thanks to its continued no-show after an announcement during the iPhone X event in September of 2017. The fact the device was not mentioned during the iPhone XS announcement event and has now been removed from Apple’s website entirely, suggests something is clearly wrong and we now have multiple reports that AirPower may never see the light of day. The reason? Apple just can’t keep the thing cool and more worryingly, it knew that before the charger was announced.

With Apple apparently unable to rectify issues caused by the layout of the charging coils used to get power into iPhones and Apple Watches wirelessly, it seems AirPower may never go on sale, at least in its current form.

(sources: 9to5Mac, MacRumors)

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