Focus on phone sales, not the Apple Watch: Analyst

Apple earnings on tap

The launch of the Apple Watch remains big news for gadget lovers, but for investors the focus should be on iPhone sales, according to one analyst.

The tech giant reports quarterly results after the bell Monday. Investors should look out for any news of iPhone price increases, which would be a good sign that profit margins could expand, JMP Securities analyst Alex Gauna told CNBC's "Tech Bet."

If consumers still buy Apple's latest iPhone models despite higher prices, that would indicate the market for these premium smartphones still isn't saturated, Gauna told CNBC.

An iPhone 6 Plus on display in an Apple store as customers talk with a salesperson.
Scott Mlyn | CNBC

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All told, Gauna said he expects Apple to report that it maintained an accelerated growth rate, in the midteens or better, including about 70 percent growth in China.

As for the Apple Watch, he said the company might give some indication of its sales so far.

"We don't think it was all that blistering out of the gate," Gauna told CNBC.

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Others remain more optimistic. Trip Chowdhry, managing director at Global Equities Research, wrote in a research note Sunday that the Apple Watch will be the most addictive device ever created in the history of consumer electronics.