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Morgan Stanley analyst: Apple will sell 30 to 60 million iWatches

Strong customer loyalty for Apple's iPhone and a strong ecosystem of apps and devices could bode good news for the iWatch.
By Ananth Baliga   |   July 14, 2014 at 4:47 PM   |   Comments

CUPERTINO, Calif., July 14 (UPI) -- Morgan Stanley analyst Katy Huberty wrote in a note Monday that Apple's iWatch could be a success within its first year, selling around 60 million iWatches.

Huberty said the iWatch could sell anywhere between 30 million to 60 million units in its first year. Her base estimate has Apple selling 30 million devices at a cost of around $300 million, generating revenue of $9 billion.

In her best case scenario, Huberty sees the Apple selling more then 60 million iWatches, causing its share price to increase to $132 or $924 at pre-split levels. But there is a downside as well, the iWatch could do terribly and cause Apple's share price falls to $74. This scenario is highly unlikely, according to her.

Huberty says she is confident that the Apple's fan loyalty and and its buoyant ecosystem of devices and apps will help boost sales of the much-awaited device. Hubberty reports that, in developed countries, 90 percent of people who own Apple products tend to keep them and express strong brand loyalty.

The retention rates for Samsung are 77 percent, 58 percent for Nokia and LG has 41 percent retention, putting Apple at a distinct advantage.

Wearables are being heralded as the next big thing to come out of mobile technology companies. Google is adding additional resources to develop its Android Wear mobile operating system, with Apple competitors Samsung and LG already releasing smartwatches.

According to Juniper Research the wearables market is expected to reach $19 billion by 2018. If Huberty is accurate and Apple generates $9 billion from the iWatch that would mean exponential growth for the market in the next 12 months.

Follow @antbaliga and @UPI on Twitter.
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