Sprint botched early Evo sales report

Wed, 06/09/2010 - 8:05am
Andrew Berg, Wireless Week

Sprint says it did not sell the number of HTC Evo 4Gs that was initially reported. On June 7, the carrier reported that the total number of HTC Evos sold on launch day was three times the number of Samsung Instinct and Palm Pre devices sold over their first three days on the market combined.

By those figures, analysts estimated that the Sprint sold right around 250,000 HTC Evo 4Gs in the first weekend.

But the carrier is changing its tune, saying it “inadvertently erred in the comparison.” The total number of HTC Evo 4G devices sold on launch day was actually “in line with” the number of Samsung Instinct and Palm Pre devices sold over their first three days on the market combined.

In response, Walter Piecyk, analyst for BTIG, lowered his estimates for Evo sales in the first weekend to 150,000. Piecyk had previously come out with estimates of 250,000 to 300,000 for first weekend sales.

Sprint still maintains that sales of the HTC Evo “continue to outpace” those of the Samsung Instinct and the Palm Pre. The HTC Evo 4G, which is the first WiMAX-capable handset in the United States, has received rave reviews for its feature set but has also been panned for poor battery life. 

Regardless of how many Evos have been sold, the number of phones sold going forward could slow considerably. Sprint is having a hard time keeping the device in stock. Reports surfaced this morning that the phone is out of stock online nationwide, as well as in many stores.

In an early morning blog post, Piecyk wrote that calls to “20+ stores today indicate that the phone is in short supply, so we do not expect that number to rise significantly in the first week of sales.”

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