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iPhone 5 could hit 6M in sales in launch weekend, says analyst

Apple's new flagship phone could generate sales as high as 2 million per day during its opening weekend starting September 21.

Now playing: Watch this: iPhone 5 is thinner, lighter, faster

Can Apple beat its previous record for opening weekend iPhone sales? Analyst Horace Dediu thinks so.

Stirring around some facts and figures, the Asymco analyst projects first-weekend iPhone 5 sales as high as 6 million. In contrast, the iPhone 4S saw sales of 4 million in its first three days, the iPhone 4 saw sales of 1.7 million, and the iPhone 3GS sales of around 1 million.

Unveiled yesterday and reaching consumers September 21, the iPhone 5 will likely attract more upgraders than new buyers over the initial weekend, according to Dediu

"There might be first time buyers, but the dedication required to ensure being first to have it usually means buyers are keen on the brand and are repeat customers," the analyst said.

The new phone boasts several key advantage over its predecessors.

Beyond the technical improvements, the iPhone 5 will initially be available in nine different countries versus five countries for the iPhone 4 and seven for the 4S.

The iPhone 4 captured sales of 113,000 units per day per country for its opening weekend. The iPhone 4S upped the ante with unit sales of 191,000 per day per country for its launch.

Assuming the iPhone 5 can grab sales of 220,000 per day per country, that totals almost 2 million per day and close to 6 million for the full weekend.

"The performance of the [iPhone] 5 in the first weekend should be better on a volume basis simply because there are more existing customers who wish to upgrade and because there are more initial and significant launch countries," Dediu added.

Further, Apple could well see over 10 million in iPhone 5 sales before the end of the month, according to Dediu.