All of Apple’s (AAPL) detractors let out a loud, collective cheer that was heard all the way around the world when the company reported sales results for its new iPhone 5 smartphone device that missed consensus expectations. While we did not publish an estimate for Apple’s iPhone 5 sales, we were content with the over five million iPhone 5 devices sold by Apple during the opening weekend from Friday September 21st to Sunday September 23rd. We believe that investors need to approach Apple with the cool, calm, dispassionate, fair and balanced perspective that we take professional pride in with regards to our research. And on that note, we can see that although the Apple iPhone 5 only sold over five million for the opening weekend in 2012, it still exceeded the 4 million devices sold for the iPhone 4S in 2011 and the 1.7 million for the iPhone 4 in 2010. We can see that Nokia (NOK) Lumia’s sales volumes are lagging the iPhone because the Lumia only sold 1 million devices in the second half of Q4 2011, 2 million devices in the first quarter and 4 million in the second quarter of CY 2012, even though the Lumia had the benefit of Big Daddy AT&T (T) spending $150M to push the Lumia 900 to its customers. That means that Nokia has averaged 3 million Lumias over a 90-day period, and that is pathetic when we compare it to the 5 million iPhones sold from September 21 to September 23.
All of the citizens of Nokia Nation, Android Nation and Blackberry Nation let out an even louder roar once they heard that the mapping app on Apple’s iOS 6 operating system on the new iPhone 5 smartphone device had run into technical difficulties. Apple’s mapping app was supposed to offer beautiful Apple-designed cartography, turn-by-turn navigation, the ability to “fly” over an area and more. Unfortunately, the mapping app came up short of that expectation. We agree with Zack Epstein that the mapping app is an ugly blemish on an otherwise excellent phone. While we don’t believe that this will be as damaging to Apple as “The Burning Platform” was to Nokia or Jim Balsillie’s childish hockey fantasies was to Research in Motion (RIMM), we believe that this needs to be addressed expeditiously. Apple had previously used Google (GOOG) Maps, but in the wake of its patent dispute decided to swap out the Google Maps app in favor of its own mapping app. In hindsight, we think that Apple should have waited another year before doing this. Google has 7,100 contractors and employees dedicated to Google Maps while Apple only has 13K FT employees excluding Apple Retail Stores. Legacy Google had over 34K employees while the Motorola acquisition added over 20K.
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