Apple Reportedly Reassigned Some Marketing Staff to Work on Bolstering Sales of iPhone XS and iPhone XR

Apple moved some of its marketing staff off other projects to focus on bolstering sales of the latest iPhone lineup in late October, around the time the iPhone XR launched, according to Bloomberg's Mark Gurman.


The report cites an unnamed person familiar with the situation who described the move as a "fire drill" and "a possible admission that the devices may have been selling below some expectations," a concern shared by some analysts and investors. Apple's stock price has plunged nearly 17 percent since November 1.

Apple is certainly marketing the latest iPhones more aggressively than in previous years. A banner at the top of its website advertises the iPhone XR "from $449," but with an asterisk, as that price requires trading in an iPhone 7 Plus for a $300 credit as part of a limited time promotion rarely seen from Apple.


These concerns are nothing new following iPhone launch season, with the doom and gloom often fueled by weakening forecasts from iPhone suppliers.

Cirrus Logic, a supplier of audio-related components for iPhones, expects its revenue for the current holiday season quarter to be around 16 percent lower than it originally forecasted due to "recent weaknesses in the smartphone market." While not named, Apple accounts for around 80 percent of Cirrus Logic's business.

Making matters worse, The Wall Street Journal reported that Apple recently slashed production orders for the iPhone XS, iPhone XS Max, and iPhone XR due in part to "lower-than-expected demand."

Apple CEO Tim Cook has dismissed those supply chain reports in the past. During an earnings call in January 2013, he noted that the company's supply chain is very complex and that conclusions shouldn't be drawn from singular data points:

Even if a particular data point were factual, it would be impossible to interpret that data point as to what it meant to our business. The supply chain is very complex and we have multiple sources for things. Yields can vary, supplier performance can vary. There is an inordinate long list of things that can make any single data point not a great proxy for what is going on.

It certainly doesn't help that Apple recently announced that it will no longer disclose iPhone unit sales in its quarterly earnings results, leading some to believe that iPhone sales have peaked and Apple has something to hide.

Apple's financial chief Luca Maestri said unit sales are "not particularly relevant for our company at this point," as they are "not necessarily representative of the underlying strength of our business." He did note that Apple may provide qualitative commentary if the info is valuable to investors.

While there were similar concerns about the iPhone X, that device ultimately sold well, so time will tell whether these headlines are baseless again. However, analysts will now have to rely exclusively on iPhone revenue to gauge sales, so the situation will no longer be as transparent going forward.

Apple has yet to announce a date for its next quarterly earnings report, but it will likely be released at the end of January. Apple expects revenue of between $89 billion and $93 billion, which would be an all-time company record.

Related Roundups: iPhone XS, iPhone XR

Top Rated Comments

(View all)
Avatar
17 months ago
More proof... Apple should've just lowered the entry prices and this could've been avoided.
Score: 98 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
17 months ago
[MEDIA=youtube]ZBma82g3Uag[/MEDIA]
Score: 98 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
17 months ago
Lower the effin' price and you wont need marketing people.
Score: 87 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
17 months ago
Hire me.

“Lower the price”

Done.
Score: 53 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
17 months ago
Whoops! We made the iPhone 7, 7+, 8, 8+ and X too powerful. Now people are actually holding on to their phones for longer than 2 years. Better screw up the next update and make them slow so people are forced to upgrade!
Score: 47 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
17 months ago
Regardless of what anyone says, Steven Jobs did work at Apple. He obviously affected something. Yes, he did pick Tim Cook at the time to be CEO; then again, he also picked Scott Forstall to run iOS. To say Apple still has the same magic as it with Steve, is to say Steve didn't do anything. Which we know is false.

Apple was always expensive but justified. Now, they're increasing prices by 20% and offering less.

The person running Apple's ship isn't a product-guy. I think it shows with this insane iPhone lineup, MacBook line-up etc., iMac's with 5400 RPM HDDs.

Apple is about experience. Well, they used to be about it.
Score: 41 Votes (Like | Disagree)

Top Stories

Seemingly Unreleased Version of Logic Pro X With Live Loops Appears on Apple's Education Site [Updated]

Sunday March 29, 2020 7:23 am PDT by Hartley Charlton
Update: Apple has replaced the Logic Pro X image with an older version. Original story follows. A seemingly unreleased version of Logic Pro X has appeared on Apple's education site, as spotted by a Reddit user. The image from Apple's education products page shows a 16-inch MacBook Pro running Logic Pro X, but with a familiar interface that looks extremely similar to GarageBand's Live Loops ...

Zoom Updates iOS App to Stop Sending Data to Facebook

Friday March 27, 2020 5:35 pm PDT by Juli Clover
Zoom, a video conferencing app that many people are using at the current time to keep in touch with coworkers while working from home, was sending data to Facebook without disclosing the data sharing to customers. As of today, Zoom has updated its iOS app to remove the SDK that was providing data to Facebook through the Login with Facebook feature, according to Motherboard, the site that...

Apple Suppliers Worried About iPhone Demand, Production Ramp-Up for New iPhones Reportedly Postponed

Friday March 27, 2020 5:56 pm PDT by Juli Clover
Most of the factories in China that supply devices and components to Apple are back to churning out products, but Apple suppliers are said to be worried about how much demand there will be for the current iPhone models and the new iPhones expected in the fall. According to Reuters, a senior official at one of Apple's major supply companies said that orders for quarter ending in March are...

2020 iPad Pro Teardown Provides Closer Look at LiDAR Scanner and Confirms Incremental Update

Saturday March 28, 2020 9:56 am PDT by Hartley Charlton
iFixit today shared a video teardown of the new iPad Pro, which Apple unveiled earlier this month. iFixit found that most of the internals of the 2020 iPad Pro are the same as the 2018 model, confirming that the device is a relatively incremental update. The most notable new feature seen inside the new iPad Pro was the LiDAR scanner, which measures the distance to surrounding objects up...

Apple Watch Series 6 Could Feature Touch ID Fingerprint Sensor, Pulse Oximetry and Sleep Tracking Support

Friday March 27, 2020 11:28 am PDT by Juli Clover
The upcoming Apple Watch Series 6 set to be released this fall could include a Touch ID fingerprint sensor built into the crown of the device, according to Israeli site The Verifier, which cites "senior sources" who have worked with its staff for a "number of years" as the source of the rumor. It's not clear how the alleged Touch ID fingerprint sensor would be implemented, as the Digital...

Bloomberg: Apple's 5G iPhone Still on Schedule for Fall Launch, But Future Products Could Be Delayed

Monday March 30, 2020 2:40 am PDT by Tim Hardwick
Apple's 5G iPhone is still on track to launch within the company's typical annual fall release schedule, according to a new Bloomberg report on filed on Monday. Signs are that Apple's Chinese-centric manufacturing -- of which Hon Hai is the linchpin -- is slowly getting back on track. The next iPhones with 5G wireless capabilities remain on schedule to launch in the fall, partly because mass...

Kuo: Apple to Launch Several Macs With Arm-Based Processors in 2021, USB4 Support Coming to Macs in 2022

Thursday March 26, 2020 8:19 pm PDT by Joe Rossignol
Apple plans to launch several Mac notebooks and desktop computers with its own custom designed Arm-based processors in 2021, analyst Ming-Chi Kuo said today in a research note obtained by MacRumors. Kuo believes that Arm-based processors will significantly enhance the competitive advantage of the Mac lineup, allow Apple to refresh its Mac models without relying on Intel's processor roadmap,...

Top Stories: Hands-On With 2020 iPad Pro and MacBook Air, iOS and iPadOS 13.4 Released, iPhone 12 Delay?

Saturday March 28, 2020 6:00 am PDT by MacRumors Staff
After last week's flurry of product launches, Apple's new iPad Pro and MacBook Air have started to make their way into consumers' hands, and we've gone hands-on with both of them this week. Apple this week also released iOS and iPadOS 13.4 (as well as macOS, watchOS, and tvOS updates) with a number of new features and improvements. Subscribe to the MacRumors YouTube channel for more videos. ...

Deals: Huge Refurbished iPhone Sale Discounts iPhone 7, 8, X, XR, and XS (From $120)

Friday March 27, 2020 5:47 am PDT by Mitchel Broussard
Woot is back today with a big sale on refurbished iPhones, including markdowns on the iPhone 7, iPhone 7 Plus, iPhone 8, iPhone 8 Plus, iPhone X, iPhone XR, iPhone XS, and iPhone XS Max. Note: MacRumors is an affiliate partner with Woot. When you click a link and make a purchase, we may receive a small payment, which helps us keep the site running. As with every Woot purchase, those...

Apple Releases ProRes RAW Beta for Windows

Monday March 30, 2020 9:33 am PDT by Juli Clover
Apple today released ProRes RAW for Windows in a beta capacity (via Mark Gurman), with the software designed to allow ProRes RAW and ProRes RAW HQ video files to be watched in compatible applications on Windows machines. According to Apple, the software will let the files be played within several Adobe apps: Adobe After Effects (Beta) Adobe Media Encocder (Beta) Adobe Premiere...