Last month, Apple sold a record 9 million handsets during the first 72 hours the iPhone 5s and iPhone 5c were available for sale. Apple doesn’t break down sales for individual iPhone models, so we’ll never know the official numbers. That hasn’t stopped outside organizations from making projections. The latest iPhone analysis comes from Consumer Intelligence Research Partners (CIRP), which was first published by AllThingsD.
According to CIRP’s survey of initial iPhone sales, 64 percent of buyers selected the iPhone 5s. Meanwhile, the iPhone 5c accounted for 27 percent, while the 2-year-old iPhone 4s took the remaining 9 percent. These numbers show that the iPhone 5s outsold the iPhone 5c by more than 2 to 1.
CIRP says that the iPhone 5 “had a slightly more successful debut” than the iPhone 5s. In 2012, 68 percent of sales during the first weekend were for the iPhone 5, compared to 64 percent for the iPhone 5s in September.
Meanwhile, the iPhone 5c performed only slightly better than the iPhone 4s as Apple’s “$99 iPhone.” Last year, 23 percent of first weekend sales were for the iPhone 4s, compared to the 27 percent for the iPhone 5c.
The iPhone 5s may continue to lead the iPhone 5c in terms of sales. However, its dominance heading into the holiday season could eventually wane.
As CIRP co-founder Josh Lowitz notes:
Over time, the lower-priced phones have tended to gain share versus the flagship phone, after the initial rush of dedicated upgraders to the newest device. So we expect that the 5c will account for a higher percent of total U.S. iPhone sales in the coming months, but the design changes may alter that dynamic. The iPhone 5c may appeal to different buyers than the legacy 4S did last year, or the new 5s will this year.
In September, Ming-Chi Kuo of KGI Securities estimated that of the 9 million iPhones Apple sold, between 3.5 million and 4.5 million were for the iPhone 5s. The rest, between 4.5 million and 5.5 million, were for the iPhone 5c. Localytics offered much different numbers around the same time. They said that the iPhone 5s was 3.4 times more popular than the iPhone 5c during the first three days of release. They based this on iPhones tracked through apps and customers. By contrast, Kuo’s numbers were “rooted in production.”
Apple plans to conduct a conference call to discuss financial results of its fourth fiscal quarter on Monday, Oct. 28. At that time, we’ll have a better idea of how many iPhones were sold since the beginning of July. These financials will only include iPhone 5s/5c sales data for the final 10 days of the quarter. Both the iPhone 5s and iPhone 5c launched on Sept. 20 in the United States, Australia, Canada, China, France, Germany, Hong Kong, Japan, Puerto Rico, Singapore, and the United Kingdom.
Last week, Apple announced that both models would soon be available in additional countries.
On Friday, Oct. 25, the iPhones are set to arrive in Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Croatia, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, French West Indies, Greece, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Macau, Malta, Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Reunion Island, Romania, Russia, Slovakia, Slovenia, South Korea, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Taiwan, and Thailand.
On Friday, Nov. 1, both models will launch in Albania, Armenia, Bahrain, Colombia, El Salvador, Guam, Guatemala, India, Macedonia, Malaysia, Mexico, Moldova, Montenegro, Saudi Arabia, Turkey, and United Arab Emirates.