Market researchers claim Apple is reducing its production of iPods, iPhones and MacBooks in the first quarter:
Consumer electronics and PC companies know the first quarter is always a downer compared with the fourth quarter, which is chock full of holiday shopping goodness. Berger is saying, however, that Apple now plans to cut production by an even larger amount than originally planned. Based on "channel checks," Berger says, Apple is cutting iPod and iPhone production by 60 percent compared with the fourth quarter, when it had originally planned to cut production by 50 percent compared with the fourth quarter.
He says this is "likely reflecting less-than-expected sell-through in 4Q, or thus far in 1Q." (Come on, Craig, this is America, it's Q1). The questions about iPhone sell-through in the fourth quarter have come up before, but iPod Touch sales appeared to be strong during Apple's most recent financial quarter.
One factor could be the launch of the new 32GB iPod Touch, which could have caused Apple to reduce production of older models of the iPod Touch in anticipation of demand for the higher-capacity model. The report was issued at almost the exact same time that Apple announced the new iPods, and it's not clear whether or not the channel checks include production of the 32GB version.