iPhone 4 winning in analyst sweepstakes

A billion in sales in the first year?

Mobile analysts have upped their guesstimates for iPhone 4 sales, following the demand for the wunder-phone on its first day of pre-orders.

In a research note, Piper Jaffray analyst Gene Munster changed his iPhone sales targets for both the quarters ending in June and September to 9.5 million from 8.5 million. He wrote that Apple will likely sell one million of the latest model iPhones within its first three days on sale.

UBS analyst Maynard Um believes Apple could sell 1 million units on its first day of launch, that’s three times as fast as the iPhone 3GS which hit sales of 1 million in its first 3 days on the market.

Munster pointed out that demand should be pushed up by AT&T’s decision to pull forward existing iPhone users’ eligibility for upgrade pricing by up to six months, unlike last year when early iPhone 3G owners were not eligible for the iPhone 3GS upgrade pricing.

He wrote, “Specifically, we believe that the 8.4 million iPhone users activated at AT&T between the Sept-08 and Jun-09 quarters will be eligible for upgrade pricing.”

We also think that the addition of more vendors into the market in the UK, and the SIM-Free sales in Europe will also help the iPhone hit even bigger sales than before. The only real question is will Apple hit a $1 billion in revenue quicker than it did with the iPad and create yet another record?

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