Apple's sales of iPhones in the first calendar quarter of 2020 were down by only 1% in a China market that contracted by 22% year-over-year, as buyers rapidly shifted to online orders and enthusiastically bought iPhone 11 models.
A refresh of the iPad Pro lineup slated for the end of 2020 may not arrive until well into 2021, a report claims, with COVID-19 affecting the supply chain sufficiently to delay the launch of a 5G-equipped model into the next year.
Qualcomm has launched the Snapdragon X60 5G Modem, a third-generation system for 5G connectivity in smartphones, but one that Apple is more likely to be using for its 2021 iPhone releases rather than 2020's "iPhone 12" models.
While industry observers are clearly seeing a short-term financial and business impact from the coronavirus outbreak in China, the first analysts chiming in on the situation don't have long-term concerns surrounding Apple's financial prospects.
Reports have emerged in the last 24 hours with contradictory sources all claiming to have the inside track on the details surrounding the antenna technology expected in the 5G "iPhone 12" — with one claiming that Apple will do most of the work itself.
The spread of 5G into mainstream usage will help create a surge of smartphone sales but the hype behind 5G will only be a temporary lift for sales of devices like Apple's 2020 iPhone refresh, with the market expected to contract in 2022.
Morgan Stanley has raised its price target on shares of Apple, voicing its view that investors are under-appreciating the impact this year's 5G-enabled iPhone release is expected to have on the company's bottom line, especially given the roll-out is expected to coincide with a multi-year peak in the number of iPhones due for replacement.