Apple will build at least 15 million 3G iPhones in 2008 bringing its total smartphone production to at least 17 million phones.
At least that’s what Craig Berger, semiconductor analysts with Friedman Billings Ramsey, expects production levels to run to by the year-end.
He has upgraded his figures after previously saying that Apple would build 13 million iPhones in 2008 (which, interestingly, included 2 million 2.5G Edge-only iPhones).
His rationale for the change is because he thinks iPhone production in the third quarter will be higher than expected.
In a report issued to clients, the Wall Street analyst said Q2 build volumes were 25 per cent lower than previous checks, “as Apple pushes production out a bit into Q3”.
Specifically, Berger says that Apple will build 9 million iPhones in the third quarter, up from 2 million in the second quarter, and more than 5 million iPhones in the fourth quarter.
His estimate for 2008 production of at least 17 million phones includes 2 million 2.5G iPhones.
The analyst said Broadcom and Marvell stand to be amongst the largest beneficiaries of the increased iPhone build forecast, as they’re both believed to be supplying key components for the new iPhone 3G.
In a research note, Berger said: “Apple continues to knock the cover off the ball, that its product cycle momentum is ramping and that any consumer spending malaise in the US or Europe has yet to impact Apple-related product demand.”
The iPhone’s future in China, the world’s biggest handset market, has become a little clearer after it was confirmed that Apple is in talks over a possible distribution deal with China Mobile.