updated 12:10 pm EDT, Thu August 21, 2008
'Massive' Mac sales in Q4?
Apple appears to be doing far better in terms of Mac sales than one might have expected this quarter, says RBC analyst Mike Abramsky. Based on a new technology adoption survey, Abramsky has raised his forecast of Mac shipments during Apple's fourth financial quarter from 2.8 million to 3.04. He describes Mac shipments as "massive," particularly in light of what he calls a "sluggish consumer spending environment."
A variety of factors are said to be helping the Mac, but as with analysts at Piper Jaffray, Abramsky suggests that a major one may be Apple's current Back to School promotion, which gets students a free iPod touch -- normally worth $299 -- alongside specific Mac purchases. Another aid may be the "iPhone halo effect," as some 17 percent of the survey respondents said they were more likely to buy a Mac after having bought an iPhone 3G.
Abramsky's predicted Mac sales figures would amount to growth of 41 percent year-over-year, and 22 percent between quarters. Apple's share of the global computer market is meanwhile expected to grow to 4.2 percent in 2009, a substantial leap from the 2.9 percent achieved in 2007. Every 25 basis points in this regard could translate into $1 billion of incremental revenue, and a 15-cent increase in share earnings.
RBC is setting a $200 price target for Apple stock, and suggests that 5.1 million iPhones will ship during the quarter. New iPods and MacBooks are anticipated before the end of the year.