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Analysts: No big surprises in iPhone 4

Tue, 06/08/2010 - 6:05am
The Associated Press

Leaks and a misplaced iPhone prototype took some of the wind from Apple Inc. CEO Steve Jobs' Monday presentation of the iPhone 4.

Several analysts already expected to see some of the new iPhone's capabilities, such as a camera on the front of the smartphone, video conferencing and longer battery life. But they were pleasantly surprised at the popularity of the iPad, Apple's version of the tablet computer.

William Blair analyst Ralph Schackart said the new iPhone hardware and software were "largely in line with expectations," citing a blog preview of Apple's hardware and Apple's own preview of the software in April that made sure investors were apprised of what was coming.

But he said iPad's popularity supported his view that Apple would sell 3.15 million units in fiscal 2010. Schackart is forecasting shipments of 36.9 million iPhones this year.

Morgan Keegan analyst Tavis McCourt said the iPad is "extremely successful" and the number of applications downloaded to the iPad are "remarkable and may be the real story of the day."

More than two million iPads have been sold since early April with 35 million apps downloaded, he said. About $1 billion has been generated by developers of iPhone apps. Apple gets a percentage of the revenue.

Oppenheimer analyst Yai Reiner has a more upbeat view of the new iPhone's features, saying that it "catapults the smartphone category forward along every axis of relevance to consumers."

The arrival of competing phones seemed to have "sparked an almost fierce level of innovation at Apple," the analyst said in a research note.

Shares of Apple, based in Cupertino, Calif., rose 42 cents to $251.36.

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