Kuo: Apple’s AR Glasses to Launch in 2020 as iPhone Accessory

Apple's first rumored head-mounted augmented reality device could be ready by the middle of next year, according to a new report out today from Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo (via Economic Daily News [Google Translate]).

A fanciful mockup of digital glasses via TechAcute

According to Kuo, Apple's AR glasses will be marketed as an iPhone accessory and primarily take a display role while wirelessly offloading computing, networking, and positioning to the iPhone.

Designing the AR glasses to work as an iPhone accessory is also expected to allow Apple to keep the glasses slim and lightweight, rather than trying to pack in all the processing hardware into the one device.

Kuo believes Apple is aiming to begin mass-producing the glasses as early as the fourth quarter of this year, although he admits the timeframe could be pushed back to the second quarter of 2020.

Back in November 2017, Bloomberg reported that Apple was developing an AR headset and aimed to have it ready by 2019, although the company could ship a product in 2020. The report said the headset would run on a new custom operating system, based on iOS, and dubbed "rOS" for "reality operating system."

Apple has been exploring virtual reality and augmented reality technologies for more than 10 years based on patent filings. The company is also rumored to have a secret research unit comprising hundreds of employees working on AR and VR, exploring ways the emerging technologies could be used in future Apple products.

Apple CEO Tim Cook has talked up the prospect of augmented reality several times, saying he views AR as "profound" because the technology "amplifies human performance instead of isolating humans."

Related Roundup: Apple Glasses

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Kuo Increases Galaxy S10 Shipment Estimates Due to ‘Spec Differentiation From iPhone Models’

Respected Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo, who works for TF International Securities, today increased his forecast of Galaxy S10 shipments by 30 percent due to better than expected pre-order demand.

Kuo attributes the better-than-expected shipment momentum to several factors including spec differentiation from iPhone models.

Pre-order demand for the S10 series is better than expected. Worldwide pre-order demand for the S10 series grows by 30-40% YoY compared to that for the S9 series based on our survey. Therefore, we will increase shipment estimates of the S10 series in 2019 by 30% from 30-35mn to 40-45 units. S10+ and S10 account for 85% or more of total shipments.

We believe that the better-than-expected shipment momentum of S10 series is due to (1) the market's bearish view on high-end smartphone growth, (2) spec differentiation from iPhone models, including an ultrasonic fingerprint on display (FOD), rear triple-camera, and bilateral wireless charging, (3) much better-than-expected demand in China market, and (4) trade-in programs.
As Kuo points out, there are notable differences between Samsung's newest phone and Apple's current crop of iPhones. Samsung devices have a triple-lens camera setup with an ultra-wide lens, and an ultrasonic under-display fingerprint sensor.

Apple is rumored to be planning to introduce a similar camera setup in the 2019 iPhones, but because it uses Face ID facial recognition instead of a fingerprint sensor, Samsung's under-display fingerprint recognition technology will continue to set it apart from Apple.

Kuo believes the under-display fingerprint sensor and the triple camera are the "spotlights" of the S10 series.

Samsung's Galaxy S10 and S10+ are available for pre-order and are set to launch later this week.


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16-Inch MacBook Pro, 6K Apple Display, AirPower, AirPods 2 and More Predicted for 2019 [Video]

Last night, we saw the release of a extensive research note from analyst Ming-Chi Kuo who laid out his timeline for product releases from Apple in the coming year. MacRumors videographer Dan Barbera recaps Kuo's predictions in this video which covers an extensive range of products including an all new 16" MacBook Pro, 6K Apple Display and much more.


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Kuo is well regarded in the rumor community due to a very good track record at predicting Apple's products. Kuo gathers intelligence from his contacts in Apple's Asian supply chain, translating the information he gleans into research notes for clients.

Our Coverage

We've updated our Upcoming Apple Products Guide based on this new information.


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AirPower and New AirPods Said to Ship in First Half of 2019, New iPod Touch With Faster Processor Also Expected

Apple's long-awaited AirPower wireless charging mat and a new version of AirPods with wireless charging support and upgraded Bluetooth connectivity will start shipping in the first half of 2019, according to analyst Ming-Chi Kuo.


Kuo also expects a new iPod touch with a faster processor to launch in 2019.

While there's been a flurry of recent rumors about the AirPower and 2nd generation AirPods, there have also been conflicting reports on the possible launch dates for the two products. One recent report specifically placed the launch of the new AirPods in the fall of 2019. We were skeptical about that report at the time, and now Kuo gives another reason to believe that the new AirPods and AirPower will be shipping in the first half of this year.

Related Roundups: iPod touch, AirPods 2

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Two New iPad Pro Models, 10.2-Inch iPad, and iPad Mini 5 Said to Launch in 2019

In a thorough research note outlining Apple's plans for 2019, analyst Ming-Chi Kuo describes his outlook for its next iPad lineup. According to Kuo, Apple plans to release two new iPad Pro models, a 10.2-inch iPad, and a refreshed iPad mini equipped with an upgraded processor later this year.


More details to follow…

Related Roundups: iPad mini 5, iPad Pro, iPad

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Kuo: 2019 iPhones Able to Wirelessly Charge Other Devices, Feature Frosted Glass and Larger Batteries, and More

In a thorough research note outlining Apple's plans for 2019, analyst Ming-Chi Kuo describes his outlook for its next iPhone lineup. According to Kuo, the 2019 iPhone lineup will mirror that of the current models, including 6.5-inch and 5.8-inch OLED models as well as a 6.1-inch LCD model.


As for changes to expect in 2019, Kuo says the iPhone XR successor may be upgraded to 4GB of RAM, while all models will include frosted glass casing, larger batteries, the ability to wirelessly charge other devices, and new technology for indoor positioning and navigation.
The new 5.8" OLED may support DSDS, and the new 6.1" LCD may be upgraded to 4GB. All of part of the new models’ main upgrades include Ultra-Wide Band (UWB) for indoor positioning and navigation, frosted glass casing, bilateral wireless charging for charging other devices, upgraded Face ID (with a higher power flood illumination), larger batteries, and triple camera feature (wide, telephoto, and ultra-wide lens).
Kuo also says all three models will include Lightning connectors rather than USB-C and have the same notch area as current models, contradicting other rumors of smaller notches.

More details to follow…

Related Roundup: 2019 iPhones

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Apple Said to Release 31.6-Inch 6K Display With Mini LED-Like Backlight Design in 2019

Apple will release a 31.6-inch 6K display with a Mini LED-like backlight design in 2019, according to Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo, who detailed his expectations for Apple's 2019 roadmap in a research note obtained by MacRumors.



Apple left the display market back in 2016 with the discontinuation of the outdated Thunderbolt Display. Apple did, however, say they were working on a new screen alongside the new Mac Pro. Apple's Phil Schiller said in 2017:
With regards to the Mac Pro, we are in the process of what we call "completely rethinking the Mac Pro." We’re working on it. We have a team working hard on it right now, and we want to architect it so that we can keep it fresh with regular improvements, and we’re committed to making it our highest-end, high-throughput desktop system, designed for our demanding pro customers.

As part of doing a new Mac Pro — it is, by definition, a modular system — we will be doing a pro display as well. Now you won’t see any of those products this year; we’re in the process of that. We think it’s really important to create something great for our pro customers who want a Mac Pro modular system, and that’ll take longer than this year to do.
Kuo describes the new monitor as a "6k3k" display.

Related Roundups: Mac Pro, Apple Displays
Buyer's Guide: Mac Pro (Don't Buy)

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Apple Said to Release 16-Inch to 16.5-Inch MacBook Pro With All-New Design in 2019

Apple will release a new MacBook Pro with a 16-inch to 16.5-inch display and an all-new design in 2019, according to Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo.


Tonight, analyst Ming-Chi Kuo released a research note looking at Apple's releases in 2019. MacRumors has obtained a copy of the report and perhaps the most exciting prediction for Mac users is the revelation that Apple is working on a 16"-16.5" MacBook Pro. Unfortunately the report provides few details beyond that it is an "all-new" design, suggesting Apple is revamping their current MacBook Pro design.

A 16"-16.5" screen would be the largest screen Apple has provided on a MacBook Pro since the discontinuation of the 17" MacBook Pro in 2012. Close followers of Apple's MacBook Pro refresh cycle have been expecting Apple to continue with the current design until at least 2020. The MacBook Pro last saw a redesign only two and half years ago.

Related Roundup: MacBook Pro
Buyer's Guide: MacBook Pro (Caution)

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Ming-Chi Kuo Says ‘Worst Soon Over’ in Regards to Slowing iPhone Sales

Earlier this month, Apple lowered its revenue guidance for the first quarter of the 2019 fiscal year by up to $9 billion due to fewer iPhone upgrades than it anticipated, particularly in the Greater China region.


Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo, however, believes the "worst" will be "soon over" in regards to the slowdown. In his latest research note with TF International Securities, obtained by MacRumors, Kuo opined that the "share prices of Apple and most iPhone suppliers are generally priced in the negative."
Our report published on December 14, 2018, was the first to cut the estimation of 2019 iPhone shipments to 190mn units or less; the current market consensus on 2019 iPhone shipments (160–180mn units) is much lower than our estimation and we believe the share prices of Apple and most iPhone suppliers are generally priced in the negative.

We maintain our forecast of 188–192mn units for 2019 iPhone shipments. We believe the downside risks of share prices for the Apple and iPhone supply chain are limited in the near term given that 2Q19 iPhone shipments will likely be better than the market consensus.
Kuo has slightly cut his estimate for iPhone shipments in the first quarter of 2019 from 38–42 million units to 36–38 million units because the "demand for new models in China and emerging markets is lower than expected," but he believes the decline will begin to ease starting in the second quarter.

Specifically, he estimates iPhone shipments in the second quarter of 2019 will reach 34–37 million units, slightly higher than the market consensus of 30–35 million units. That would still be a roughly 14 percent decline on a year-over-year basis, but far better than an estimated 29 percent drop in the first quarter.

As long as the US-China trade war does not worsen, Kuo expects the improvement to continue into the second half of 2019, with iPhone shipments likely to be generally flat compared to the second half of 2018 thanks to stronger replacement demand, trade-in programs, and market share gain in European markets.

Kuo maintains his forecast of 188–192 million iPhone shipments in 2019.

Related Roundups: iPhone XS, iPhone XR

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Ming-Chi Kuo Says iPhone XR Demand Has Been Lower Than Expected, Slashes Shipment Estimates

iPhone XR demand has been lower than expected, according to Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo, who has slashed his overall iPhone shipment forecast by 20 percent for the first quarter of 2019. He now expects Apple to move 38-42 million iPhones in the quarter, down from his original estimate of 47-52 million.


Kuo, in a research note with TF International Securities, obtained by MacRumors:
We have reduced our 1Q19 iPhone shipment estimation by 20% to 38–42mn units (vs. our previous forecast of 47–52mn): We cut the 1Q19 iPhone shipment estimation again for the following reasons. (1) Lower-than-expected XR demand. We have reduced our 1Q19 XR shipment estimation to 15–20mn units vs. our previous forecast of 20–25mn units. (2) The increase in orders of legacy iPhone models cannot offset the decline of XR and XS series shipments because of the low season impact.
Apple reported sales of 52.2 million iPhones in the first quarter of 2018, which corresponds with the second quarter of Apple's fiscal year, so as few as 38 million units in the first quarter of 2019 would be a significant year-over-year decline.

For the iPhone XR in particular, Kuo has revised his shipment estimate to 15-20 million for the first quarter, down from 20-25 million.

Kuo estimates annual iPhone shipments will fall between 205 million and 210 million in 2018, and based on that, forecasts that annual iPhone shipments in 2019 will decline up to 10 percent to a range of 188 million to 194 million. This would fall below Wall Street's consensus estimate of around 212 million units in 2019.

While this news paints a pessimistic outlook for the iPhone, declining unit sales will likely be at least partially offset by the rising average selling price of iPhones. Apple's latest iPhone lineup is its most expensive yet, with the $349 iPhone SE discontinued and the iPhone XS Max topping out at $1,449 with 512GB of storage.

Kuo:
We believe that the iPhone ASP could at least keep growing YoY until 3Q19, and it will offset the YoY shipment decline. However, most suppliers will face growth challenges due to iPhone shipment decline. We believe that specific suppliers can grow, thanks to the component price increase or the ability to obtain new orders, but the visibility of the beneficiary list will not be clear until 1Q19 because some spec and order allocations of 2H19 new iPhone models are not confirmed yet.
Apple will no longer be disclosing unit sales in its quarterly earnings reports going forward, so investors will have to look towards iPhone revenue to determine how well the handset is selling. If unit sales are particularly bad, then a rising average selling price might not be enough to hide the weakness.

Apple has been aggressively marketing its latest iPhones. On its website, for example, the iPhone XR and iPhone XS take up the entire homepage with advertised starting prices of $449 and $699 respectively. However, each have an asterisk that leads to fine print that says pricing is based on an iPhone 7 Plus trade-in.


Apple's earnings results for the first quarter of 2019 will likely be released in May, so we're still some time away from real numbers.

Related Roundup: iPhone XR
Buyer's Guide: iPhone XR (Buy Now)

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