Apple went off to a good start with its new generation of iPhone – in just the first weekend the company shipped 9 million units of the 5s and 5c combined. But analyst Gene Munster of Piper Jaffray thinks this is mostly thanks to the iPhone 5s, which was the top selling device in the US for the month of September.
Munster contacted 60 Apple stores and found that the iPhone 5s availability dropped to just 6%, down from 27% a couple of weeks ago. Even if you'd settle for any iPhone 5s variant you'd still find it hard to grab one – stores that have at least one iPhone 5s SKU went from 90% to 40% in about a week.
All of this has pushed the resale value of the iPhone 5s pretty high – a 16GB version currently resells for 32% more than it costs at the store. Munster didn’t mention color versions, but we guess the high-demand gold version is pricier than the white and space grey models.
Munster believes the short supply is caused by Apple preparing to launch the iPhone 5s into 51 new markets next month.
This overwhelming demand contrasts the iPhone 5c, which is in stock everywhere. You don't even have to wait for it – while there's some lead time for the 5s, a 5c can be delivered to your door in just 24 hours in the six biggest markets for Apple.
Yesterday we heard a report that Apple halved iPhone 5c production orders after weak performance in China, as the high price tag didn’t help its cause.
The 5c resale value is 11% lower than its retail value, another stark contrast with the 5s. For comparison, the Samsung Galaxy S4 resale value is currently around 12% lower than its retail value in the US (to be fair, the S4 has been available longer than the iPhones and is readily in stock everywhere).