While analysts expected that the technical problems with iPhone 4 antennas would have a profound impact on Apple's sales, the real problem impacting Apple's bottom line is its exclusivity with AT&T. At least, that's what a survey released on Wednesday by Piper Jaffray's Gene Munster concludes.
Munster and his team interviewed 258 cell phone users in Minneapolis to gauge the impact of the iPhone 4's signal problems related to the antenna. Munster claims that surveyors never directly asked respondents about Verizon Wireless, but the subject came up anyway.
Approximately 177 respondents (69 percent) said they were aware of iPhone 4's problems related to faulty antennas. Of those who knew, 20 percent said that it affected their decision to purchase.
Munster said that, for every one respondent that acknowledged the antenna issue, three complained about the iPhone not being available through Verizon. Munster concluded that the "lack of an iPhone on Verizon is holding sales back by about three times more than the antenna issue."
Here's how Munster comes to this conclusion:
"In order to quantify a worst-case scenario, we estimate that 40 percent of all iPhone sales are domestic (was 38 percent in the June quarter). We are modeling for Apple to sell 11m iPhones in the Sept. quarter, implying about 4.4m domestic sales. If Apple lost 20 percent of those sales, or 880k units, it would reduce our EPS estimate in the quarter by $0.11, from $3.72 to $3.61.:
Despite this Apple is still doing very well with the iPhone 4, but Munster's point is that the company could be doing a lot better if it would just hash out a deal with Verizon. Source: CNN Money