(Adds details from Jefferies note on suppliers, background, updates shares)
By Himank Sharma
Dec 14 (Reuters) - Apple Inc shares fell 3.9 percent on Friday after the iPhone 5 debuted in China to a cool reception and two analysts cut shipment forecasts.
Jefferies analyst Peter Misek trimmed his iPhone shipment estimates for the Jan-March quarter, saying that the technology company had started cutting orders to suppliers to balance excess inventory.
Shares of Apple suppliers Jabil Circuit Inc, Qualcomm Inc, Skyworks Solutions Inc, TriQuint Semiconductor Inc, Avago Technologies Ltd, and Cirrus Logic Inc also fell in early trading.
Apple shares have lost a quarter of their value since they hit a life high of $705.07 on Sept. 21, as it faces increasing competition from phones using Google Inc's Android operating system.
Misek cut his first-quarter iPhone sales estimate to 48 million from 52 million and gross margin expectations for the company by 2 percentage points to 40 percent.
UBS Investment Research cut its price target on Apple stock to $700 from $780 on lower expected iPhone and iPad shipments for the March quarter.
The brokerage said it was modelling more conservative growth for the world's biggest technology company after making supply chain checks that revealed that fewer iPhones were being built.
"Some of our Chinese sources do not expect the iPhone 5 to do as well as the iPhone 4S," UBS analyst Steven Milunovich wrote in a note to clients.
Apple launched the iPhone 5 in China on Friday, a move widely expected to bring the Cupertino-based company some respite from a recent slide in market share in China, but early reports indicated that demand may not be as great as expected.
"The iPhone 5 China launch has been surprisingly muted but (we) are unsure how much weather (snow) or the required pre-ordering (to prevent riots) are factors," Misek said.
Apple shares fell as low as $508.50 in morning trading on the Nasdaq on Friday. (Editing by Supriya Kurane)
Earlier on HuffPost:
Find My iPhone
An app from Apple that tracks your iPhone's location so that if you ever lose it, or it's stolen, you can log onto iCloud.com and find it quickly. You can <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/10/13/icloud-find-my-iphone_n_1009425.html">read more about why Find My iPhone is so indispensable here</a>. <a href="http://itunes.apple.com/us/app/find-my-iphone/id376101648?mt=8">Download Find My iPhone Here</a>.
The popular social network that you may or may not belong to. <a href="http://itunes.apple.com/us/app/facebook/id284882215?mt=8">Download Facebook here</a>.
In the <a href="http://www.readwriteweb.com/archives/what_twitter_looked_like_when_it_was_born_screensh.php">immortal words of Twitter's hilariously outdated first homepage</a>, "You'll never be bored again...E V E R." That might not be totally true, but Twitter is a wonderful way to pass time, connect with like-minded people and complain about airlines. <a href="http://itunes.apple.com/us/app/twitter/id333903271?mt=8">Download Twitter here</a>.
Find restaurants and other nearby establishments, complete with user ratings. Now integrated into Apple Maps, though you might have better accuracy within the Yelp app itself. <a href="http://itunes.apple.com/us/app/yelp/id284910350?mt=8">Download Yelp here</a>.
A mapping application that won't give you horrifically bad directions. <a href="http://itunes.apple.com/us/app/mapquest/id316126557?mt=8">Download MapQuest here</a>.
Turns on your rear camera flash -- which is very bright! -- so that you can search the floor of that dark bar for your dropped contact lens (or whatever else people use flashlights for). <a href="http://itunes.apple.com/us/app/flashlight./id285281827?mt=8">Download Flashlight here</a>.
Identify songs -- and now television shows -- by holding up your phone to the speaker for a few seconds. <a href="http://itunes.apple.com/us/app/shazam/id284993459?mt=8&ign-mpt=uo%3D2">Download Shazam here</a>.
The Huffington Post
SHOCK: Your favorite news site, at your fingertips. <a href="http://itunes.apple.com/us/app/the-huffington-post/id306621789?mt=8">Download The Huffington Post here</a>.
Order takeout or delivery the easy way in several large cities. Makes ordering food so convenient that at the end of the month you'll wonder where all your money went and why there are so many empty styrofoam boxes in your kitchen. From:<a href="http://itunes.apple.com/us/app/seamless-food-delivery-takeout/id381840917?mt=8"> iTunes</a>
Split the bill the easy way by paying your friends through this smartphone app. You'll need to convince them to download the app, too: You can do this by never carrying around cash and insisting that you'll Venmo them the money you owe. <a href="http://itunes.apple.com/us/app/venmo/id351727428?mt=8">Download Venmo here</a>.
Save webpages on the Internet and read them later, even when you don't have an Internet connection. <a href="http://itunes.apple.com/us/app/pocket-formerly-read-it-later/id309601447?mt=8">Download Pocket here</a>.
Track your runs, or at least remind yourself daily that you really should be exercising. <a href="http://itunes.apple.com/us/app/runkeeper-track-gps-running/id300235330?mt=8">Download RunKeeper here</a>.
Remember The Milk
Remember The Milk is a simple reminders app that's better than the one Apple has included with iOS 6. It can help you remember -- among other things -- the milk. <a href="http://itunes.apple.com/us/app/remember-the-milk/id293561396?mt=8">Download Remember The Milk here</a>.
The camera on the iPhone is good but basic, lacking any on-screen post-photo editing tools. Photoshop Express gives you a free suite to perfect your photos on the iPhone. <a href="http://itunes.apple.com/us/app/adobe-photoshop-express/id331975235?mt=8">Download Photoshop Express here</a>.
Ostensibly a social network for foodies, Foodspotting is a good way to visually search, by dish, for good restaurant food around you. Don't get caught at a spot with small portions ever again! <a href="http://itunes.apple.com/us/app/foodspotting/id350727118?mt=8">Download Foodspotting here</a>.
For those of us who don't have unlimited data plans, watching your megabyte count each month can be essential to avoiding overage charges. Onavo not only monitors your data usage each month; it can also automate certain settings on your iPhone to lower the amount of data you consume in certain applications. <a href="http://itunes.apple.com/us/app/onavo-extend-data-usage-get/id423545287?mt=8">Download Onavo here</a>.
This is another one you have to force your friends to download: GroupMe is a group messaging application that bypasses the need to send texts, which can drastically reduce the cost of your text messaging plan and help you avoid overages. <a href="http://itunes.apple.com/us/app/groupme/id392796698?mt=8">Download GroupMe here</a>.
A GPS app with a twist: You and your fellow drivers can manually report crashes, stalls, and speed traps ahead. Especially helpful for those in cities, as Waze has a large (and growing) user base of drivers reporting traffic. <a href="http://itunes.apple.com/us/app/waze-social-gps-traffic-gas/id323229106?mt=8">Download Waze here</a>.
A beautiful app that pulls in the best of the day's writing into a central location. Clean navigation and and an addictive to keep up with the news (or adorable puppy photos). <a href="http://itunes.apple.com/us/app/pulse-news-for-iphone/id377594176?mt=8">Download Pulse here</a>.