Apple Inc.'s (NASDAQ: AAPL) iPad unit estimates for the September quarter were lowered by FBN Securities analyst Shebly Seyrafi after the company said it just sold its 100 millionth iPad a few weeks ago.
Seyrafi reduced his iPad estimates for the fiscal fourth quarter to 15.5 million from 18 million.
"Taken literally, this might imply that its cumulative iPad shipments were not 100M exiting FQ4. Our new 15.5M unit estimate => 99.6M cumulative iPad shipments," Seyrafi wrote.
The analyst also lowered his revenue/NG EPS estimate to $35.3B/$9.10 from $38.3B/$10.05 (consensus is $36.2B/$8.84) for the three months ended September.
As expected, AAPL today announced that it will be shipping an iPad Mini, but it surprised investors with the launch of a 4th generation iPad just about 6 months after the prior launch of the "new iPad (3rd generation)", Seyrafi said.
"Moreover, AAPL is pricing the low-end iPad Mini (16GB/Wi-Fi only) at $329, over a 50% premium to some of the other 7" tablets out (although, admittedly, AAPL's iPad Mini at 7.9" has roughly 35% more space)," the analyst wrote.
"In spite of concerns about the price and fast next-gen iPad roll-out, we would be buyers of the stock even in front of earnings this Thursday as we do believe that customers will pay a premium for an AAPL tablet and the company now has a rather strong iPad cycle in front of it," Seyrafi said.
AAPL also did announce a 13" MacBook Pro with Retina Display for $1,699 and a 21.5" iMac ($1,299) as well as a 27" iMac ($1,799), but these announcement pale in comparison to the iPad announcements, the analyst wrote.
The stock, which has been trading in the 52-week range of $363.32 to $705.07, retreated 2.17% to trade at $620.39 on Tuesday.