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As I note in the book:

Apple has proved the pundits wrong. Rather than being underpowered and feature-poor products that wouldn’t sell, the iPhone proved to be simple, easy-to-use tools that everyone wanted.

Since then, it has taken Apple:

  • 608 days to sell one million iPods
  • 74 days to sell one million iPhones
  • 28 days to sell one million iPads
  • 1 weekend to sell the first one million iPad 2s
  • 4 days to sell three million New iPads

The iPhone 5 has come out and, again, the reviews as so-so. (Aside from Fox News, though, who thought that it would include ‘laser keyboard, holographic images’). And it appears that Apple has another hit on its hands though, and two million iPhone 5 preorders have already sold out. If we add the latest datapoint to the series, then we have:

And if we visualise this then the trend is quite scary.

Relative time to 1 million sold (log, iPhone 5 = 1)

i.e. it took 1,000 times longer to sell 1 million iPods as iPhone 5s.

Apple’s supply chain is undervalued. Not only can Apple create the products consumers want, but their supply chain can rapidly react to changing design whims (we’ve all heard the story about changing the face of the original iPhone from plastic to glass at the last minute) and they can service huge bump in consumer demand. We’re even hearing the the new phones are being sent directly from the Foxcon assembly plants. An impressive feat when Apple does not own most of its own supply chain.