Apple shares tumble at open, down nearly 8%

Why are investors selling Apple?
Why are investors selling Apple?

Following Apple's disappointing outlook and iPhone sales, a debate is heating up over where the consumer electronics giant's share price is headed, with one analyst calling for a near 40 percent fall in the stock.

Apple shares fell sharply at the open Tuesday, down more than 6 percent. (Click here for the latest quote.)

Bert Dohmen, president and founder of Dohmen Capital Research Institute has a long-term downside target of $320 for the stock, citing the company's declining profit margins and lack of technological innovation.

"Apple hasn't had any technological innovations since Steve Jobs left, and this is a company that's getting beaten by its competitors. Now, we hear the next big item (iPhone 6) is going to have a larger (screen) size, Samsung has had that for two years," Dohmen said.

(Read more: Apple has innovation woes, pros say )

Data released by research firm IDC on Tuesday showed that Samsung's smartphone market share edged up one percentage point on-year to 31.3 percent in 2013, while Apple's fell from 18.7 percent to 15.3 percent.

"We are recommending not buying this stock, and have been since six days after the top which was $705 in September last year," he said.

(Read more: Global smartphone makers closing in on Apple)

Apple shares crumbled 8 percent to $506 in after-hours trading Monday on disappointing iPhone sales during the October-December quarter and lower-than-expected revenue guidance for the current quarter.

During the quarter, Apple said it sold 51 million iPhones, fewer than the 55-million estimate expected by Wall Street analysts. In addition, the company said it expects to hand in current-quarter revenue of between $42 billion and $44 billion, versus expectations for $46.05 billion.

The company posted earnings of $14.50 a share on sales of $57.59 billion, surpassing expectations for $14.07 a share on sales of $57.46 billion, according to a consensus estimate from Thomson Reuters.

Colin Gillis analyst at BGC Financial who cut his rating on Apple to hold from buy ahead of the earnings release on Monday said the company needs new products in order to drive future growth given fierce competition from low-cost rivals in the smartphone and tablet space.

(Read more: Apple drops on weak iPhone sales, revenue outlook)

Getty Images

"The functionality gap between [Apple and] the low price competition is getting smaller and the pricing gap is getting wider. What we need from Apple is not just to continue to sell iPhones and iPads into its customer base, we need new product," Gillis told CNBC's Fast Money.

"The problem is when you get into this part of the cycle for Apple it could be a dead money stock. And when it hit our price target ($550) today, we felt obligated to downgrade it," he said.

Peter Misek analyst at Jefferies, who has a buy rating on the stock with a price target of $650, however, had a more upbeat view on the company's prospects.

He believes that the iPhone 6, set to be released later this year, will spark a big upgrade cycle for Apple and is optimistic about the company's future product line-up.

(Slideshow: Rising smartphone stars look to outshine Apple)

"As far as new products are concerned, we've heard of all kinds of equipment being order by Apple," Misek said.

"We think new products are on the horizon - an iWatch is the most likely candidate—and at some point in the future an iTV. We don't think it [Apple] is dead yet," he added.

—By CNBC's Ansuya Harjani. Follow her on Twitter @Ansuya_H