While rumors of iPhone 5C’s poor performance have been a dime a dozen, apparently the company is sitting on three million units of unsold inventory.
The “unapologetically plastic” iPhone 5C was released late last year, prior to its release it was expected that the smartphone would do well in emerging markets. After the release, there was a flood of reports claiming that iPhone 5C was not performing up to the company’s expectations.
This doesn’t come as much of a surprise. Prior to the launch of both new iPhones last year, it was rumored that iPhone 5C would truly be a low-cost iPhone. That didn’t turn out to be true, and consumers were widely seen to be preferring the iPhone 5S, which not only offers better internal hardware but also premium build materials that the iPhone has always been loved for. Even in emerging markets consumers leaned more towards the flagship iPhone, perhaps the situation might have turned out differently had the iPhone 5C been launched at a much more competitive price point.
Over the past few months there have already been many rumors claiming that Apple has significantly cut down production of iPhone 5C units. One rumor went so far as to suggest that Apple had ordered manufacturers to cease production entirely. Latest chatter from the supply chain suggests that as many as three million units are gathering dust, with Apple sitting on two million units in the factories while one million has already been distributed to carriers, who may be having a hard time trying to sell it to customers.
One thing is for sure though, the future of iPhone 5C remains unknown at this point in time. Recent reports suggest that Apple may discontinue the iPhone 5C this year and focus entirely on its flagship iPhone, if it ends up doing that, people won’t waste any time chalking up the plastic iPhone as a flop.