Apple stock dives after iPhone launch

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CNET Editor

Nic Healey can usually be found on a couch muttering about aspect ratios and 7.1 channel sound - which is helpful given that he's the home entertainment guy at CNET.

Were you expecting a bit more excitement from Apple's iPhone launch yesterday? So were investors, apparently.

(Credit: James Martin/CNET)

After the event, which took place on Tuesday morning, US time, Apple's stock was down around 2 per cent, at US$494.

But come the opening of trading on Wednesday morning, the stock plummeted over 5 per cent to US$467.

Much of the blame is being levelled at the high price tag on the iPhone 5c, which had been predicted to be around US$300, rather than the eventual US$549.

Business analysts haven't been holding back on their criticism of the move.

Bernstein Research analyst Toni Sacconaghi, Jr, referred to the iPhone 5c as a missed opportunity:

We worry that Apple's inability/unwillingness to come out with a low-priced offering for emerging markets nearly ensures that the company will continue to be an overall share loser in the smartphone market until it chooses to address the low end.

In a report entitled "So Much for a Low-Priced iPhone to Penetrate Emerging Markets", Citi analyst Glen Yeung was equally disparaging:

At this level, we do not expect the iPhone 5c to meaningfully penetrate emerging markets without substantial subsidy, noting that phones priced above US$300 account for just 13.7 per cent of the global handset market, and the average price of a premium phone in China is 23 per cent below the US (and the gap is expected to widen).

Analysys Mason's principal analyst Ronan de Renesse was a little more bullish, saying that "the iPhone 5c is better designed to complement the iPhone 5s and address competition from the likes of Nokia, Samsung and HTC in the upper-mid smartphone segment".

As always with Apple, one can never underestimate the cultish nature of the fanbase, so it's still possible that the 5c could turn out to be a winner. That said, we can't see too many circumstances where the relatively small saving between the two phones would be enough to make the 5c a preferred option.



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