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Apple: The iPhone Upgrade Cycle Is Underappreciated, Says 5-Star Analyst

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Now that Q2 has come to end, the focus on Wall Street will turn to the second quarter results. In Apple’s (AAPL) case, the past 3 months have been defined by the Covid lockdowns in China which will adversely affect revenue by between $4 billion and $8 billion.

However, recent checks made by Wedbush analyst Daniel Ives regarding the Asia iPhone supply chain indicate that over the past few weeks the situation has been “steady with slight improvements.”

“As of now we believe iPhone demand is holding up slightly better than expected (despite the various supply issues that have plagued Apple and the rest of the tech sector),” the 5-star analyst noted. “That said, the Street is well aware of weakness this quarter and we believe ultimately is looking past June numbers to the September and December quarters with all eyes on the iPhone 14 production/demand cycle for the Fall.”

So, the China issues and supply chain woes should hit a peak in the June quarter and should subside as the year progresses – right in time for the launch of the iPhone 14.

Ives thinks initial expectations for the latest model of Apple’s flagship product are “flat to slightly higher” compared to the iPhone 13, which indicates that despite the “jittery macro,” Apple is still confident demand for the latest version remains healthy.

In fact, Ives thinks Apple’s “unparalleled” installed base of 1 billion iPhones is not properly appreciated and provides the company with a big advantage over other tech giants. The analyst is of the mind investors are underestimating the “stickiness” of the iPhone upgrade cycle and estimates that around 240 million of the 1 billion iPhones have yet to upgrade to a new smartphone over the past 3.5 years. “This importantly speaks to the Apple growth path over the next 12 to 18 months as iPhone 14 is set to be unveiled in the September timeframe,” Ives confidently wrapped up.

All in all, Ives maintained an Outperform (i.e., Buy) rating on Apple shares, while his $200 price targe tindicates room for 45% upside by this time next year. (To watch Ives’ track record, click here)

So, that’s the Wedbush view, what does the rest of the Street think? Most agree with Ives’ stance although not all are on board; however, despite 6 fencesitters, with 21 positive reviews, the stock boasts a Strong Buy consensus rating. Shares are expected to appreciate by ~35% over the next year, given the average price target currently stands at $186.09. (See Apple stock forecast on TipRanks)

To find good ideas for stocks trading at attractive valuations, visit TipRanks’ Best Stocks to Buy, a newly launched tool that unites all of TipRanks’ equity insights.

Disclaimer: The opinions expressed in this article are solely those of the featured analyst. The content is intended to be used for informational purposes only. It is very important to do your own analysis before making any investment.