Apple touted record iPhone 6s and 6s Plus sales of more than 13 million in the first three days after launch, beating last year’s launch sales of 10 million, but the company didn’t go out of its way to point out that this year’s launch included China for the first time.
With the addition of Chia and New Zealand, this year’s launch included 12 markets, up from last year’s 10. The other 10 markets are the the U.S., Canada, the U.K., Germany, France, Australia, Hong Kong, Japan, Singapore and Puerto Rico.
BTIG analyst Walter Piecyk said the inclusion of China more than doubled the addressable market compared with last year, when China did not launch until mid-October. iPhone first-weekend sales have climbed every year since the iPhone 3G was announced, he noted.
For its part, IHS also expected sales would do better this year in the first three days of availability and also expects Apple will ship 236 million iPhones this year, up 22 percent compared to 2014.
Next year could be different, however.
“Next year is the big one for Apple,” said analyst Ian Fogg. “In 2016, Apple will have to sustain iPhone 6S sales throughout the year in a mature smartphone market, and it must find a way to redesign the iPhone look radically to continue to drive upgrades.” This “will be a greater challenge than achieving success in 2015 where Apple has benefited from the straightforward switch to offering larger screen iPhones.”
The two new phones will be available in more than 40 more countries beginning Oct. 9 and in more than 130 countries by the end of the year.
“Sales for iPhone 6s and iPhone 6s Plus have been phenomenal, blowing past any previous first weekend sales results in Apple’s history,” said Apple CEO Tim Cook.