Apple could increase iPhone sales almost 50% YoY for Q1 2021, says Cowen

Apple iPhone 12 Pro Max cameras
Apple iPhone 12 Pro Max cameras (Image credit: Apple)

What you need to know

  • Investment firm Cowen has increased their iPhone production prediction for Q1 2021.
  • The company believes Apple could ship as many as 55 million iPhones this quarter.
  • This would be a 49% increase year over year.

As reported by AppleInsider, financial services firm Cowen predicts that Apple is increasing its iPhone 12 production demand for the second quarter after a stellar performance over the holiday quarter.

In a smartphone build update report from Cowen seen by AppleInsider, analysts say they have upgraded their forecast for the March 21 quarter for the third month in a row. Cowen currently believes Apple intends to produce 55 million iPhone units, a 49% year-on-year increase for the quarter, and up from 51 million forecast by the firm one month ago.

The firm says that the iPhone 12, iPhone 12 Pro, and iPhone 12 Pro Max all outperformed their initial expectations, while only the iPhone 12 mini either met or underperformed what was expected.

The increase in units is driven by higher demand for three of the four iPhone 12 models, with the iPhone 12 itself said to make up 2 million of the extra units, while the iPhone 12 Pro and iPhone 12 Pro Max each added 1 million to the total. The iPhone 12 mini estimates are supposedly unchanged from Cowen's previous forecast.

Apple iPhone 12

Apple iPhone 12 (Image credit: Apple)

The report also notes that the iPhone is seeing increased performance in China, with the latest data CAICT predicting 6 million shipments in December. This would indicate a multi-year high for Apple and cause the company to reach 20% market share in the country.

The good news in China occurs during a time when overall smartphone shipments in the country are slipping, down 10% in December on a month-to-month basis and down 13% year-on-year to 26.6 million units. Approximately 6 million of these units were for foreign brands, with Apple consuming the vast majority of that segment.

These predictions come ahead of Apple's first-quarter earnings call for 2021. The call is scheduled to take place on Wednesday, January 27, 2021, and is expected to feature the company's Chief Executive Officer Tim Cook and Chief Financial Officer Luca Maestri. It is scheduled to kick off at 2:00 p.m. PT / 5:00 p.m. ET.

Joe Wituschek

Joe Wituschek is a Contributor at iMore. With over ten years in the technology industry, one of them being at Apple, Joe now covers the company for the website. In addition to covering breaking news, Joe also writes editorials and reviews for a range of products. He fell in love with Apple products when he got an iPod nano for Christmas almost twenty years ago. Despite being considered a "heavy" user, he has always preferred the consumer-focused products like the MacBook Air, iPad mini, and iPhone 13 mini. He will fight to the death to keep a mini iPhone in the lineup. In his free time, Joe enjoys video games, movies, photography, running, and basically everything outdoors.