With the new iPhones on the market for a little over two months, I'm able to make some initial comments as to how the iPhone 6 is selling in comparsion to the iPhone 6 Plus.
What the data says: The iPhone 6 was initially outselling the iPhone 6 Plus by approximately 6 to 1 at launch, but over the last nine weeks as iPhone 6 Plus supply has ramped up and the new iPhones launched in China, the iPhone 6 is now outselling the Plus by approximately 3 to 1 according to Mixpanel and Fiksu. Tech analyst Ben Bajarin reported Baidu/Umeng data suggests a similar breakdown between iPhone models in China.
What the data doesn't say: We still don't know how iPhone demand/supply imbalance is impacting consumer purchasing decisions. Are consumers choosing the model that is in stock in-stores or with a shorter wait time online? In the Apple U.S. online store, the 16GB iPhone 6 Plus ships in 7-10 business days while the 16GB iPhone 6 ships in 5-7 business days.
Looking ahead: I wouldn't be surprised if the iPhone 6 to iPhone 6 Plus ratio trends towards 2.5 to 1 suggesting approximately 70% of consumers are choosing iPhone 6 and 30% are choosing iPhone 6 Plus. Why? The iPhone 6 Plus may represent a good compromise for consumers deciding between a phone and tablet. I can envision a scenario where some consumers not interested in the latest tech gadget actually prefer the iPhone 6 Plus because it is easier to read text and watch video on compared to the iPhone 6. Offsetting this trend, the Plus' higher price tag may make the iPhone 6 a more popular choice for parents buying phones for their children or budget-conscious customers that don't want an iPhone 5s or 5c.
Apple Impact: The iPhone 6 Plus has a higher margin than the iPhone 6 which should help Apple's financials. I still view iPad cannibalization at the hands of iPhone 6 Plus as a long-term positive for Apple given the higher iPhone margin and the customer remaining in the iOS ecosystem.