[The 747-8F was the launch aircraft. One that is still in production, recently got orders and as the replacement cycle hits, could get more. The 8i was second, a sort of "we're already halfway there" throw in to the ring. The 8i was an total flop.
Sorry, you have that wrong. When launched, Boeing expected the freighter to represent just 25% of sales. They saw the passenger version outselling freighters 3 to 1. You could argue they were as wrong as Airbus.
Scbriml, you can try to sell that nonsensical "Boeing were as wrong as Airbus", but, really, no one (but you) are buying your brand. Airbus completely jacked up the market forecast, and based on their internal calculations and forecasts, basically tripled-down on the A380, and planned accordingly. Boeing was far more modest, and planned accordingly (Hence doubling down on 777, going ahead with 787, and giving a mild update to the 747, as they didn't see the need to build anything bigger as the market couldn't sustain it). In fact, one could say Airbus quintupled-down, because Boeing's forecast, IN 2000, said the following:"The market for very large airplanes is small. Summing the projected requirements for 747-and-larger airplanes in all major travel markets reveals a total need for 1,010 airplanes over the next 20 years. Within this size category, about two-fifths of the requirement — or approximately 410 passenger jets — is for airplanes of the size of the 747-400. About one-quarter of the requirement is for freighters.
The market for airplanes larger than today’s 747-400 becomes significant only during the second decade of this forecast. By the end of the forecast period, most intercontinental routes will have at least daily service, and traffic volumes will support an airplane larger than the current 747. If airport capacity constraints are more severe, airlines may employ more of these airplanes. The projected requirement for airplanes of 500 seats or greater, however, is estimated at only 330 passenger jets over the study period.
How many A380s and 747-8i are in service, again?
Airbus predicted over 1700 aircraft of VLA size, including A380 and 747.