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Old Aug 31, 2012, 11:03 AM   #1
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Apple's Crowded Late 2012 Product Introduction Schedule Forced by Delays to iMac and iPad Mini




KGI Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo has released a new research report outlining his thoughts on Apple's product introductions for the remainder of 2012, noting that delays in some necessary components have forced Apple into a very tight timeline that is less than ideal and which may impact growth over the short-term. The delays have affected several products, including the new "iPad mini" and an updated iMac.
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Our survey shows that Apple will take the wraps off quite a few new products in September and October. From a marketing and sales point of view, too many new products in a short period of time is not a positive thing. An interval of at least two weeks between different products is needed; otherwise the promotional campaign will lack a clear focus and shopping line management will become overly complicated, not good for a satisfactory shopping experience. The good news is that we think Apple is well aware of the situation and is doing what it can to keep each new product's launch as isolated an event as possible.
Recognizing that Apple is working to stagger its new product releases to ensure good visibility for each of them, Kuo has stretched out his estimated schedule from his report last month that saw nearly every product being introduced in September. Kuo now believes that the 13-inch Retina MacBook Pro and an updated 21.5-inch iMac could appear at any time, followed by the next-generation iPhone and iPod touch in mid-September. A tweaked full-size iPad and updated iPod nano would follow in early October, with the iPad mini and new 27-inch iMac later in October.

Kuo's report also walks through each of the products and highlights the production challenges that have forced Apple's hand on release dates.

On the iMac front, Kuo indicates that Apple will not be introducing Retina displays to the lineup this year, but that the company is working to fully laminate the current display panel to the cover glass for improved display quality. The process has proven to be challenging, and with lower yields on the 27-inch display than on the 21.5-inch panel, Kuo is modeling for sooner availability of the smaller model. We would naturally expect Apple to introduce both models at the same time, but the 27-inch may see either delayed availability or tight initial supplies as production on the panels ramps up.

Apple's work on the iPad mini has reportedly been slowed by the adoption of a thinner and lighter "GF Ditto" touch structure. Apple is said to be the first company in the world to commercialize and mass produce the technology, but equipment transitions and yield issues have reportedly forced Apple into its October launch for the device.

For the iPhone, he believes that Apple's suppliers should be able to offer sufficient supplies of the new in-cell display but that ramping has been slow due to some technical hurdles and logistics of packing the new display into a thinner body. Kuo predicts that the new iPod touch will adopt the same in-cell display technology and be released alongside the new iPhone, but that supplies could be constrained with priority for the new displays being given to the iPhone.

As for the iPod nano, Kuo believes that the device will indeed incorporate Wi-Fi connectivity as was rumored over the weekend and a revamped body with larger screen, but that issues with integrating the Wi-Fi chip into the revised iPod nano body will lead to a mid-October launch for the device.

Article Link: Apple's Crowded Late 2012 Product Introduction Schedule Forced by Delays to iMac and iPad Mini
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Old Aug 31, 2012, 11:05 AM   #2
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You guys are in for another treat.

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Old Aug 31, 2012, 11:06 AM   #3
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Am I the only one who doesn't believe that Apple will be releasing a minor update to the iPad this year?
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Old Aug 31, 2012, 11:07 AM   #4
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The timing is off on the 13" retina and the 21.5" imac unless they release today.

edit
read the graph wrong....guess the separation for the months is not the dots (abovee Month name) is but the vertical line line
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Old Aug 31, 2012, 11:07 AM   #5
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Since when did anybody talk about a tweaked full-size iPad besides this guy?
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Old Aug 31, 2012, 11:07 AM   #6
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I would be utterly shocked if Apple released an updated version of the new iPad to add the new dock connector. It would imply that they should do the same thing with the iPhone 4 and iPhone 4S as well. I just don't see that happening. The only update to the new iPad I expect would be a quite one to reduce the die size of the A5X chip like they did with the WiFi iPad 2's A5 chip.
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Old Aug 31, 2012, 11:09 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BC2009 View Post
I would be utterly shocked if Apple released an updated version of the new iPad to add the new dock connector. It would imply that they should do the same thing with the iPhone 4 and iPhone 4S as well. I just don't see that happening. The only update to the new iPad I expect would be a quite one to reduce the die size of the A5X chip like they did with the WiFi iPad 2's A5 chip.
I also don't understand where this rumor of updated dock connectors being done accross the range comes from. Apple never retrofits old models when introducing a new inter-connect. They keep selling the old one until those products get updated at the proper time.
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Old Aug 31, 2012, 11:11 AM   #8
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I'm reluctant to believe this schedule, the release of the ipod series in different moments is highly unlikely
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Old Aug 31, 2012, 11:12 AM   #9
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Gee....

I wonder if the "part problems" can be traced to SamSung/Korean components?
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Old Aug 31, 2012, 11:13 AM   #10
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Originally Posted by basesloaded190 View Post
Am I the only one who doesn't believe that Apple will be releasing a minor update to the iPad this year?
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Originally Posted by GlenL View Post
Since when did anybody talk about a tweaked full-size iPad besides this guy?
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Originally Posted by BC2009 View Post
I would be utterly shocked if Apple released an updated version of the new iPad to add the new dock connector. It would imply that they should do the same thing with the iPhone 4 and iPhone 4S as well. I just don't see that happening. The only update to the new iPad I expect would be a quite one to reduce the die size of the A5X chip like they did with the WiFi iPad 2's A5 chip.
Agreed. It doesn't make any sense for Apple to release an update only 7 months later. I don't think we've ever seen that short of an update cycle from Apple (regarding the iDevices), with maybe the exception of the Verizon iPhone?
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Last edited by ymmit; Aug 31, 2012 at 11:15 AM. Reason: Clarification
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Old Aug 31, 2012, 11:14 AM   #11
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Originally Posted by basesloaded190 View Post
Am I the only one who doesn't believe that Apple will be releasing a minor update to the iPad this year?
Nope. With so many pans in the fire with all of the their other product releases, it doesn't make sense to to invest the time, cost and effort tweaking a product whose current design is just 6 month old.
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Old Aug 31, 2012, 11:14 AM   #12
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Hopefully with a matte display option. Or else it is a deal-braker, since it is a serious health and productivity issue.*MacMatte.
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Old Aug 31, 2012, 11:14 AM   #13
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Originally Posted by KdParker View Post
The timing is off on the 13" retina and the 21.5" imac unless they release today.
I thought so too. then I realized that the Sep and Oct labels are in the middle of each month. The line between them is Oct 1.
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Old Aug 31, 2012, 11:14 AM   #14
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21.5" iMac - may be just what the doctor ordered

Would love to see:
- 16GB RAM
- 512GB SSD
- USB3 - 4x
- TB - 2x
- 1 FW800 for old times sake
- Upgraded CPU options
- Updated GPU

The top-of-the-line current 21" iMac fully loaded is about $2750 with 2TB and a 256GB SSD.

Let's see where we end up. $2500?
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Old Aug 31, 2012, 11:15 AM   #15
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I don't really know what's going on. But, hey, I'm an analyst and we are paid to make stuff up based on "people familiar with the matter" sources.
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Old Aug 31, 2012, 11:16 AM   #16
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With a new iPhone design, ipod line refresh, 13" rMBP, iPad mini and iMac refresh, Q4 will be massive for apple.
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Old Aug 31, 2012, 11:17 AM   #17
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Migraine inducing glare

I love my iMac, mostly, but I'm not buying another one till they get rid of the migraine inducing glare-screen. Hopefully that's what they're talking about with the new LCD mounting process. Otherwise I'll just stick to building Hackintoshes.
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Old Aug 31, 2012, 11:17 AM   #18
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I just don't see them doing two events one month apart...I think they just blow the lid off everything on Sept 12th and just stagger release the products through Sept and Oct.
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Old Aug 31, 2012, 11:19 AM   #19
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Just a little "wild" speculation here, but I think these new dates should be more accurately described as shipping and not launched... If Apple makes that distinction...

I don't see why the delay to announce/launch a 27" iMac a month after the low end one is announced. As was mentioned, announce them both and have different shipping dates. This is something that is not new at all to Apple or it's products... And would make a little more sense. The people who have been waiting for a new iMac now have a time line to work with, even if they have to wait a little longer for their iMac to ship.

Apple could also possibly gain a few more sales of the 27" iMac with pre-orders if people could still take advantage of the Back to School offer of gift cards.

Like I said, just a little wild speculation but makes sense to me...
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Old Aug 31, 2012, 11:20 AM   #20
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I just don't see them doing two events one month apart...I think they just blow the lid off everything on Sept 12th and just stagger release the products through Sept and Oct.
They will do separate staggered events to maximize product exposure.

They're REALLY staggering the Mac Pro.
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Old Aug 31, 2012, 11:22 AM   #21
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Originally Posted by redirector View Post
Would love to see:
- 16GB RAM
- 512GB SSD
- USB3 - 4x
- TB - 2x
- 1 FW800 for old times sake
- Upgraded CPU options
- Updated GPU

The top-of-the-line current 21" iMac fully loaded is about $2750 with 2TB and a 256GB SSD.

Let's see where we end up. $2500?
I'd like to see Retina and as for the GPU...2GB and Nvidia chipset and the GTX chipset, not the GT (and I think the iMac uses the notebook chipsets so it would have to be the 660M-680M).

I was disappointed with the MBP-R GPU only having a 1GB Nvidia 650GT. That was a deal breaker for me....otherwise I would have bought as soon as that thing went live...but for Graphics/AE/PSD, etc...no way can I just use a 1GB card..especially with that resolution it offers. Hopefully we have 2GB GPUs on it soon.

Last edited by Ryth; Aug 31, 2012 at 11:28 AM.
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Old Aug 31, 2012, 11:25 AM   #22
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Agreed. It doesn't make any sense for Apple to release an update only 7 months later. I don't think we've ever seen that short of an update cycle from Apple (regarding the iDevices), with maybe the exception of the Verizon iPhone?
The Verizon iPhone wasn't an update though. It didn't replace the existing line-up. An updated dock connector on a 3rd gen iPad would. It would be quite the first indeed, but who knows, this is Apple.
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Old Aug 31, 2012, 11:26 AM   #23
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They will do separate staggered events to maximize product exposure.

They're REALLY staggering the Mac Pro.
I don't think stagger is the correct term to use for this mess with the Mac Pro.

Maxmizing product exposure is really hardly a concern. They are so covered by the press, EVERYTHING will get exposure. I mean we know the iPhone will get it. For the iPad Mini, if anything that would get it's own even but since it's an iOS device, makes sense to do with the iPhone.

For the MBPR-13..it's just a change in size..not need for an event for that. Along with the iMac, even if it's Retina, they've already gone over the OSX earlier this year with the MBPR and OSX event.

Last edited by Ryth; Aug 31, 2012 at 11:32 AM.
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Old Aug 31, 2012, 11:28 AM   #24
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Originally Posted by Ryth View Post
I don't think stagger is the correct term to use for this mess with the Mac Pro.

Maxmizing product exposure is really hardly a concern. They are so covered by the press, EVERYTHING will get exposure. I mean we know the iPhone will get it. For the Mac Mini, if anything that would get it's own even but since it's an iOS device, makes sense to do with the iPhone.

For the MBPR-13..it's just a change in size..not need for an event for that. Along with the iMac, even if it's Retina, they've already gone over the OSX earlier this year with the MBPR and OSX event.
While that's true I have a gut feeling the iMac will be a surprise.
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Old Aug 31, 2012, 11:28 AM   #25
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Assuming this is roughly correct and the fact Apple is estimating 9-7-12 for iMac 21.5" deliveries to in-store deliveries, we would expect the 9-12-12 public event to remind folks of the 21.5" iMac release and the 13" rMBP release, then discuss the iPod Touch and iPod Nano new features and discuss release dates. The iPhone 5 will of course be offered for release soon after the event, but will be severely supply constrained for over two months.

No mention of the Mac-Mini, but since it fills a need, I suspect it will also be released along the way. It tends to align release with the lower end MacBook anyway.

I think we have to wait for October for the iPad Mini and I have no idea why the iMac27" would have to wait that long. So I think the release schedule stated may be closer to:

iMac21.5"
13"rMBP
iPodTouch4"
iPodNano2"
Mac-Mini
iMac27"
iPhone5
NewiPadUpdate
iPadMini

That's my guess. All by 10-20-12

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