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Apple's Lower-Cost iPhone As a 'Mid-End' Device

AllThingsD shares details on a new report from J.P. Morgan analysts Gokul Hariharan and Mark Moskowitz, who unsurprisingly argue that Apple's rumored lower-cost iPhone will still be a "mid-end" device rather than competing against the true low end of the smartphone market. The analysts point to Apple's previous introductions of the iPod nano and iPad mini as cheaper versions of their parent products that were still significantly more expensive than low-end competitors due to Apple's refusal to sacrifice quality for the sake of price.

Echoing some previous rumors, Hariharan and Moskowitz suggest that Apple's lower-cost iPhone is likely to cost $350-$400 without subsidies, significantly cheaper than the iPhone 5 that starts at $650. The analysts point out that such a device would come in at a relatively sparsely-populated midrange of a pyramid that sees strong unit sales at the top and bottom but weakness in the middle.
Currently Samsung dominates this segment ($200-500 price range) with 35+ percent market share. [...] We believe Apple could take 20-25 percent of this market in the next 12 months (from almost no market share currently), if it prices a lower-priced product at $350-400 levels.
jpmorgan_smartphone_price_pyramid
On a separate note, Digitimes is reporting today that Apple's lower-cost iPhone will be specifically targeted at emerging markets and will initially launch in limited volumes in order to test interest in the device. The report claims that Apple is expected to deliver only 2.5-3 million units during the device's first quarter of availability.

While Apple almost certainly has interest in bringing such a device to emerging markets, it seems more likely that Apple will offer the device on a broader basis in order to appeal to consumers in the numerous markets where subsidies are not common. Even the United States is seeing pushback against subsidies to some degree, with prepaid carriers gaining customers while also beginning to offer the iPhone, and even major carriers like T-Mobile shifting their strategies to end packaged subsidies and instead break out phone costs on separate payment plans.

Related roundup: iPhone 6

Top Rated Comments

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21 months ago

is there a sexual hint in this or is it just me?


Just you.
Rating: 19 Votes
21 months ago
'Mid-End' makes no sense.
Rating: 16 Votes
21 months ago
is there a sexual hint in this or is it just me?
Rating: 13 Votes
21 months ago


This is presumably what will happen :eek:
Rating: 8 Votes
21 months ago
nice.. Europe will enjoy the new cheap iPhone :)
Rating: 7 Votes
21 months ago

Just you.


I need to stop posting on MR & get out more
Rating: 7 Votes
21 months ago
Go low, sell at cost. Claim the whole market. Recover the money from iTunes sales.

An iPhone in every pocket!
Rating: 6 Votes
21 months ago
"Mid-End"?! That's a non sequitur if ever I saw one.
Rating: 5 Votes
21 months ago

is there a sexual hint in this or is it just me?

Giggidy!
Rating: 4 Votes
21 months ago

I totally agree! I'm sick and tired of these big phone companies dangling these pretty devices in front of people, spending billions on advertising convincing them their lives are pointless without them, and then binding them up in a multi-year contract that they have no escape from.

Apple should just sell all their products without any carrier. Screw the phone companies!


I agree. Last Christmas I wanted to buy 3 iphones and didn't have a problem with the "subsidized" price, it was the contract that was unbelieveable. 3 phones with a data pack was going to cost $285/ month which is nuts. I then wanted to see how much just buying the phones would be without the plan and it was $1800+ No way! So I ended up getting a Samsung GS II and a Samsung Gal Proclaim. Kept my little flip phone and use the Walmart Straight talk plan for a total of $120 per month unlimited everything for three lines and I can stop at any time.

I really wish I had iPhones because they would work with my mac but there is something to say about $120/month versus $285/month for TWO YEARS!

I love Apple (and own Apple stock) but I just can't go for that, no can do. (Hall and Oates) :)
Rating: 4 Votes

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