October 6, 2022
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New Apple Exclusive Reveals iPhone 14 Release Surprise

  • August 25, 2022
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New Apple Exclusive Reveals iPhone 14 Release Surprise

08/23 Update below. This post was originally published on August 20

Apple’s new iPhones are coming soon, and now we know they will cost more and arrive earlier than ever before.

The latter part of this picture was revealed in two steps. First by Bloomberg, which leaked Apple’s September 7 launch event, and second thanks to BGR, whose detective work all but confirmed the day the iPhone 14 lineup will be released. While Bloomberg’s report contained anecdotal evidence that “Some retail store employees have been told to prepare for a major new product release on Sept. 16,” BGR analyzed Apple’s previous release schedules to find a strict pattern.

“Apple launches the new iPhones either on a Tuesday or a Wednesday. In this case, it appears to be a Wednesday, September 7th,” reports BGR senior writer Chris Smith. “Then, preorders start on the first Friday after the event. That’s September 9th. The release follows precisely a week after preorders… Apple will ship preorders on that second Friday and start in-store sales worldwide.”

That timeframe would mark the joint earliest iPhone launch (tied with the iPhone 7), since Apple moved releases to the Autumn, more than a decade ago. This is a big surprise, given the ongoing global chip shortage, which has hit tech companies worldwide and pushed both the iPhone 12 and 13 releases into October.

08/22 Update: Bloomberg’s Mark Gurman has leaked further information about the iPhone 14 launch in his latest PowerOn newsletter. In it, Gurman doubles down on his earlier report as well as backing up the research from BGR.

“As I reported last week, the company is planning to announce the iPhone 14 at an event on Sept. 7,” he reveals. “It would be the earliest iPhone launch since 2016 and be followed by the new device going on sale Sept. 16—about a week ahead of last year’s schedule.”

Gurman notes that this is “an atypical day for Apple product launches,” with the company historically preferring Tuesday events. He speculates that this is due to Labor Day “because press and other guests will need a travel day after the Monday holiday.”

According to Gurman, the earlier timing will create more space between a planned October event for new iPads and Macs. It will also give the company an additional week of iPhone 14 sales in its fiscal fourth quarter.

“Another week of iPhone 14 sales should help the company easily beat last year’s $83 billion mark (indeed, analysts are already projecting revenue of about $89 billion),” he explains.

08/23 Update: additional iPhone 14 release dates have leaked thanks to display analyst Ross Young, one of the industry’s most accurate sources. Posting for his Twitter Super Followers, Young revealed:

“The iPhone 14 Pro Max has the highest share of panel production and shipments with a 29% and 28% share respectively. The 14 Max has the smallest share at 21% of production and 19% of shipments. It is expected to make up a lot of ground in September.”

The latter part of this information is the most interesting. The iPhone 14 Max is widely tipped to be the most popular new model (I agree with this), but its production has proved the most challenging. Last month, Young described its component shipments as “way behind through August,” with Pro shipments 3x higher.

Consequently, the shift to a 21% share is a dramatic improvement, and Young’s comments that iPhone 14 Max production will “make up a lot of ground in September” suggests wait times may not be as long as first feared.

I still expect the iPhone 14 Max to be in short supply at launch and for the first 6-8 weeks. So if you plan to snap up Apple’s first (relatively) affordable 6.7-inch iPhone, I would suggest you move quickly once pre-orders open on September 9.

Moreover, with the price of iPhone 14 Pro models expected to go up by at least $100 compared to the iPhone 13 Pro and iPhone 13 Pro Max, the temptation will be to impulse buy a much more expensive Pro model if you miss out. So be prepared.

Why is Apple stepping things up? TF International Securities analyst, Ming-Chi Kuo, has an explanation:

“The global recession risk is still growing and unpredictable, so announcing/shipping the iPhone as soon as possible may minimize the impact of recession risk on demand,” he tweeted. “Which could be one of the reasons why Apple offered a positive outlook for 3Q22 from the last earnings call.”

This makes sense, especially when few rivals can match Apple’s slick supply chain. That said, there is likely to be one casualty of Apple’s ambitious timeframe: the iPhone 14 Max.

Apple’s cheaper version of the iPhone 14 Pro Max is said to be “way behind” schedule, with stock limited for several months. So if you’ve decided that Apple’s cheapest ever big screen smartphone is the model for you, be prepared to move fast when preorders open on September 9.

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Kelly Johnson

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