One analyst, listening to Apple's Q2 earnings call, heard something in the corporate-speak that leads him to conclude that, yes, the iPhone 5 will be out in late June.
First, here' what everyone heard from Apple CFO Peter Oppenheimer: "We expect OpEx (operating expenses) to be about $2.5 billion, including about $255 million related to stock-based compensation expense."
Here's what Andy Zaky heard: "... we expect the iPhone 5 to be released in late June or early July as planned."
What the what?
Andy Zaky, a contributor to SeekingAlpha.com, provides some swagger as he not only predicts the gadget's arrival, but is also able to call out fellow analyst Herb Greenberg (of CNBC). Greenberg reported that Apple should not offer quarterly advice, because its management is so conservative that there's litlte value in what they say.
Au contraire, says Zaky, for Greenberg doesn't have the right ears to hear the jewels hidden in the jargon.
The grist is in the "guidance" Apple is expecting. Apparently Apple has underestimated its actual expenses in 13 of the past 15 quarters.
Given Apple’s past history of underestimating its expenses, coupled with guidance that is $150 million higher than what it actually reported last quarter, indicates that Apple is “reaching” to get ahead of some major expense. Apple will probably report closer to $2.6 billion in operating expenses as a result of some major product launch for which Apple will be preparing. Notice the reason Apple has to “reach” is because they can’t just come out with a $2.7 billion OpEx guidance. That would all but confirm a June launch for the iPhone. Thus, the $2.5 billion number is subtle enough that most analysts will simply brush over the number without a second look, but telling enough to those paying close attention.
Zaky digs in much deeper (it is an economic analysis article, after all) with what he charts as evidence of a pending rollout.
At the very least, he's added to the rumor mill -- and gave Greenberg a little "what fer."