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Monday, April 25, 2011, 09:40 am PT (12:40 pm ET)

'Mystique' surrounding Apple's white iPhone 4 seen as sales booster

Though the white iPhone 4 is set to launch this week some 10 months after the black version of the handset went on sale, numerous delays are believed by one analyst to have created a "mystique" around the device that could boost sales.

Brian White with Ticonderoga Securities believes the white iPhone 4 will help to further boost sales of Apple's hot-selling handset. He said the announcement of the white iPhone 4 last summer, and the 10 month delay for its arrival, have given it a "certain mystique and scarcity value" that he believes could provide a "tailwind" for sales in the June quarter.

White has argued that a white iPhone 4 matters, because certain demographics will find the handset and its different color appealing. In particular, he found in recent travels to Asia that there was quite a bit of interest in the white iPhone 4.

"China has clearly caught 'Apple fever,' and we believe the country is a prime candidate for a 'white' iPhone 4," he said. "Even with a potential iPhone 5 launch in September, we believe a 'white' iPhone 4 could lure consumers to make a purchase."

Consumer purchases of electronics are not an entirely rational decision, he said, and some products are purchased for different reasons, including status, aesthetics, functionality, quality, and a "cool factor."

AppleInsider first reported on Sunday that Apple has begun shipping white iPhone 4 units to its retail stores in the U.S. It is believed that the device will go on sale this Wednesday, April 27.

The introduction of the white iPhone 4 10 months late may be possible because of a later-than-usual introduction of the new fifth-generation iPhone this year. Sources have indicated that Apple's next-generation handset will go into production in September, after the usual June launch timeframe.

White iPhone 4


The white iPhone 4 was delayed numerous times by Apple, which cited manufacturing problems. Earlier this year, AppleInsider learned that Apple had turned to a Japanese company to craft a new paint material to resolve those issues.

The white iPhone 4 is just one of many products in Apple's pipeline that White believes will push Apple's stock 100 points higher in the next three to five months. Ticonderoga Securities has a 12-month price target of $612 for AAPL stock.

He expects strong demand for the iPad 2 to continue, and for the iPhone 5 to have a strong launch later this year. White also reiterated claims that Apple could release an Internet-connected high-definition television set by the end of this year, based on his checks with sources.