You'll have to wait a while to get your hands on the next iPhone. Normally, this would be a positive indication for Apple stock, but the situation this year is a little more muddled.
According to Credit Suisse analysts, wait times for the iPhone 13 family of handsets are still long across the board. Customers who want the iPhone 13 Pro and Pro Max will have to wait more than four weeks, according to the Swiss bank's team, which is the longest delay in at least four years.
According to the researchers, the wait time for the iPhone 13 is equally long, ranging from two to four weeks, with wait times remaining similar or even rising somewhat longer between September 4 and September 8.
Measurement of shipping delay times for iPhones ordered straight from Apple online in major markets across the world is part of the analysts' technique for assessing waiting periods. They don't include demand from Apple's physical shops, as well as demand from carriers and other retailers.
Wait times have previously been used as a predictor of device demand, implying that the iPhone 13 will sell out quickly. As Barron's reporter Max A. Cherney noted last month, "Apple stock literally lives and dies on the company's iPhone sales every year."
However, in a world beset by supply-chain challenges, the fact that wait times for some models are at multiyear highs may not be the unambiguous green light it once was.
"While wait times are a crude indicator for initial demand," the analysts noted, "the statistic is simply one of several variables driving iPhone sell-through; supply availability is a critical uncertainty, particularly this year."
They went on to say that while it was "encouraging" to see wait times for the more expensive higher-end models like the Pro and Pro Max stay the longest, supply is likely playing a factor in the long delays. This makes determining the underlying demand for the iPhone 13 family even more challenging.