iWatch in 2013? Maybe. Big-screen iPhone 6? Not till 2014 -- Citi

In a note to investors, Citi comments on the time frame for an iPad Mini Retina release. The investment bank also says an iWatch could land before the year is out and comments on pricing for a low-cost iPhone 5C.

You'll have to wait until the first quarter of 2014 for an iPad Mini Retina, Citi reiterated.
You'll have to wait until the first quarter of 2014 for an iPad Mini Retina, Citi reiterated. Apple

The iPad Mini Retina is landing in the first quarter of 2014, while an iPhone 6 should arrive in the first half of next year, Citi Research reiterated in a note to investors. And, needless to say, Citi had something to say about more imminent iPhones (as well as the rumored iWatch).

In a note published late Monday night from Citi's Glen Yeung -- "Mini Retina a 2014 Event" -- the investment bank essentially confirmed what it said in June about the Mini Retina.

In our 6/7/13 note, we first indicated that the iPad Mini with Retina display was likely pushed out until late 2013 or early 2014. Despite some recent investor discussion that it may be pulled forward, our Asia team continues to agree with our opinion that iPad Mini Retina is unlikely to be pulled forward.

We therefore continue to believe that Apple's 2H13 [second half 2013] iPad lineup will be iPad5 (reduced weight, slimmer bezel, thinner design), iPad Mini (the existing model), and a reduced price iPad Mini (likely priced at $249).

The 2014 Mini Retina schedule jibes with what NPD DisplaySearch has been saying to date. Recent comments to CNET from IHS iSuppli, however, left open the possibility that a Mini Retina could arrive late this year.

Citi also addressed the rumored iPhone 6 and iWatch.

Looking Ahead to iPhone 6/iWatch - As we have written in the past, we expect Apple to launch a larger-screen version of iPhone (dubbed iPhone 6) in 1H14 [first half 2014]. We also anticipate the launch of iWatch, possibly in 2H13.

And that "low-cost" iPhone 5C may not be so low after all.

As we wrote in our 8/18/13 Semi Beat...we agree with our Asia team that the cost to build iPhone 5C is ~$50 lower than the iPhone 5S (implying $240 vs. $290). Based on this assumption, we estimate that the wholesale selling price of iPhone 5C will be ~$390 and the retail selling price will be ~$450. It is because of this relatively high-price (average smartphone price is ~$225) that our Asia team revised down their build forecast; we concur that at this price point, existing carriers may be loath to make room for a 3rd Apple product (instead opting to adjust mix to accommodate iPhone 5C) and new carriers may balk at the still high subsidy cost.
About the author

Brooke Crothers writes about mobile computer systems, including laptops, tablets, smartphones: how they define the computing experience and the hardware that makes them tick. He has served as an editor at large at CNET News and a contributing reporter to The New York Times' Bits and Technology sections. His interest in things small began when living in Tokyo in a very small apartment for a very long time.

 

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