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Yesterday Bloomberg reported that Apple is working on a super-sized iPhone X with a display "close to 6.5 inches." Where would this fit into Apple's iPhone line up, and how would it change the pricing?
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The report echoes a report by KGI analyst Ming-Chi Kuo several months ago that claimed that Apple would release three new handsets this year.
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Mashing together the two reports, and adding in a sprinkling of guessing, it seems that Apple is planning to release two OLED-equipped iPhone X handsets, one with the "close to 6.5 inches" display (you can think of this as an iPhone X Plus), and another with a 5.8-inch display, which will be an updated version of the existing model. The third iPhone, based on Kuo's report, would be kitted out with a 6.1-inch LCD display and be a hybrid of the "Plus" iPhone and the current iPhone X.
But what is this going to cost?
In a note to subscribers, Apple analyst Neil Cybart of Above Avalon suggested some aggressive pricings:
- 6.5-inch OLED - $1,199
- 5.8-inch OLED - $999
- 6.1-inch LCD - $849
Bear in mind that these are starting prices, and higher storage capacities will bump the prices up.
Cybart justifies the pricings by saying that the "narrative of disappointing iPhone X demand due to a high price is off the mark" and that "Apple has room to go even higher in iPhone pricing as long as there is additional tech or value attached to the higher price."
As for the older devices, Cybart predicts the following pricing structure:
- 5.5-inch iPhone 8 Plus: $699
- 4.7-inch iPhone 8: $599
- 5.5-inch iPhone 7 Plus: $569
- 4.7-inch iPhone 7: $449
- 4.7-inch iPhone 6 or 6s in select markets: $349
- 4-inch iPhone SE (an update is still likely at some point in 2018): $299
This pricing structure looks aggressive to me, because it bumps up the price of the cheapest new iPhone by yet another $50, following a similar bump this year. The gap between $699 for "last year's" model with a 5.5-inch display and the cheapest "new" iPhone also feels like quite a leap. Pricing the 6.1-inch LCD model at $799 and perhaps rejigging the prices of the handsets below that by $50 or so might make everything look more palatable to price-conscious buyers.
Either way, I think that a starting price of $1,199 for an iPhone X with an OLED display is highly likely. Apple is not going to be keen on cutting the price of the 5.8-inch iPhone X on its first upgrade, and OLED panel pricing and yields really don't offer the firm much in the way of wriggle room to do so anyway.
So, would you pay $1,199 for a super-sized iPhone X Plus? I imagine enough people will to make it profitable for Apple.
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