Prediction: 1.64 Million Macs Sold - Wall Street Analysts and Firms Predict 1.47 Million

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By: switchtoamac at: 2:39 PM on October 17, 2006 | Comments (2)
Apple Computer will report the earning on Wednesday October 18, 2006 following the close of the US Stock Market.  The company will provide guidance for 2007 fiscal first quarter (Q1 2007) that runs from October 2006 to the end of December 2006.

Over the past few weeks, several Wall Street Analysts and Investment Firms have ratcheted up expectations for Mac Unit Sales for Apple's 2006 Fourth Quarter (Q4).  All in all, consensus analyst estimates expect shipments of 1.47 million Macintosh (Mac) computers during the quarter.

Recent increases and projections from analysts

On October 13, 2006 Merrill Lynch analyst Richard Farmer increased his expectation to 1.51 million units versus his previous projection of 1.44 million units.  He stated:

"broader thematic shift in the story away from iPods toward an emphasis on Macs and 2007 new product cycles."

October 12, 2006:

  • PiperJaffray analyst Gene Munster raised his projection to 1.49 million units, up from a 1.44 million prior projection.
  • UBS Investment Research analyst Ben Reitzes projected sales of 1.48 million units.

October 9, 2006

  • American Technology Research analyst Shaw Wu projected 1.4 million units representing a 6 percent increase over the 2006 fiscal third quarter.

Switch To A Mac Projects 1.64 Million Units

In an October 10, 2006 titled, Preview: Apple's Q4 2006 Financial Earnings - Mac Sales Increase we projected sales of 1.64 million (1,640,000) units, 170,000 more than the Wall Street consensus estimate.

As you will see in that post, Apple has posted Mac Unit Sales of 3,693,000 for the first three fiscal quarters of 2006.  Also pay attention to the analysis of Mac model releases as well as the recently concluded Back To School buying season.  Be sure to analyze the graphs and tables as the data clearly demonstrates acceleration in Mac Unit sales.

In a September 20, 2006 article titled Apple's Mac OS Market Share Rises 24 Percent Year Over Year,  I stated:
"I expect the Q4 2006 earnings to demonstrate further Macintosh unit sale growth but to an extent that will blow away market and analysts expectations.  Throughout various posts on this site, I have stated that I expect Apple to expand it's market share."

As a result of the 1.64 million prediction, I expect that Apple shipped 5,333,000 Macs for fiscal year 2006.

2007 Commentary

I expect that Apple will ship between 6,600,000 and 6,800,000 Mac in fiscal year 2007 as Apple will see an acceleration in Mac adoption across consumer and business markets.  Revamped Macintosh models (iMac, Mac mini, Mac Pro, MacBook, Pro, and MacBook) will include Intel's latest processors, new models, the release of Mac OS X Leopard (10.5), new iPods, and new gadgets (iPhone?) will all culminate towards increased consumer and enterprise acceptance of Apple products.  The by-product will trickle directly on Macintosh sales as all products will leverage the OS X operating system running on a Mac.

What may skew the numbers is how Apple will classify the upcoming television set-top box currently referred to as the "iTV".  Will Apple classify the unit as a Mac or some other device?  I suppose it all depends on the operating system that will run on the unit.  Will it be a scaled down versionof Mac OS X?  Regardless, 2007 will be an exception year for Apple that will see the company add a significant number of users to the Mac OS X base.

Note that Apple Computer is currently participating in first quarter of fiscal year 2007.  Mac sales for the quarter will be extremely robust during the upcoming holiday season.  I expect that Apple will sell between 1.55 and 1.62 million Macs.

Post Your Predictions
  • How many Macs did Apple sell during it's 2006 Fiscal Fourth Quarter?
  • How many Macs will Apple sell in 2007?

2 Reader Comments

I am going out on a limb here and predict that by Q4, 2007, Apple will sell over 2 million Macs in a single quarter for the first time. They're moving solidly in that direction.


It's surely a possibility. There's a chance that the 2006 Holiday Season may be the quarter it happens. Even if it doesn't, I think that Q1 2007 will be a proxy for demand going forward.

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