Surprise: A funny thing happened on the way to the fail

Macalope

Sit down, children, and listen as the Macalope tells the tale of a long-ago time, a time so long gone that The Old Ones still walked the Earth, devouring passers-by whole and spitting out the bones. Our ancestors knew their names: Dornhax the Fearful, Rowstagon the Ever-Hungry, The Hideous Being Known Only As “Kent” and others. Yea, this was the time, the time when it was told that iPhone SE sales on opening weekend were a big disappointment.

Well, wait, actually, that was just a month ago. So, forget all that stuff the Macalope just said. He’s not even sure why he brought it up.

Just after the iPhone SE launch, a firm called Localytics was pushing a study they did that showed usage of the device was way lower than usage of previous iPhones after their launch weekends. The fail was clearly sentient, fully weaponized and it had a plan, a plan to destroy the iPhone SE. It also may have had zombie powers. Not sure what those are, but it probably definitely had them.

However, after the benefit of hindsight granted by a great passage of time (less than a week), Mark Hibben at Seeking Alpha noticed a few problems with Localytics numbers. First of all, what Localytics was tracking was a percentage of overall iPhones in use at that time. In other words, a percentage of a number that increases over time. So, the same percentage measured twice is more impressive the second time.

Second, when you compare them to Apple’s reported sales figures, Localytics’ measurements are as goofy as a trademarked character of the Disney Corporation (Donald, actually).

Localytics' percentages imply that there were 435 million iPhones in use at the end of 2014 and a whopping 1 billion in use at the end of 2015.

Apple sells a lot of phones, but there’s no way they more than doubled the number of iPhones in use from 2014 to 2015.

Hibben also noticed that the iPhones SE was backordered a week to 10 days. Now, you can’t judge shipment quantities based on a phone being backordered, but it was at least a sign that the iPhone SE was selling better than Apple expected. To that point, it’s selling even betterer because now it’s backordered 2-3 weeks.

Everyone likes little phones now. Big phones are so 2015.

The only downside is the fact that Apple didn’t realize that a smaller phone would sell so well. It’s almost like they’re not getting the Macalope’s emails, like they’re going into their spam folder.

Almost like that.

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