New cheaper iPhone would drop a flagship feature

Apple is getting hammered in the Chinese market, and in an attempt to claw back market share from the likes of Huawei, Vivo, and Oppo is planning to release a cheaper iPhone. But cheaper means making compromises.
Written by Adrian Kingsley-Hughes, Senior Contributing Editor

Apple is not having a good time in China and is under massive pressure from firms such as Huawei, Vivo, and Oppo. What Apple needs is a cheaper iPhone, but that means making some pretty big compromises.

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According to the Global Times, Apple is working on an iPhone would retail for around the 5,000 yuan ($730) price point, which is the preferred price point in the Chinese market.

The average price of smartphones sold in China in 2018 was 2,523 yuan, and handsets priced more than 4,000 yuan accounted for only 13 percent of the total sales.

So, if Apple wants to capture a bigger market, it needs to slash prices.

But to make an iPhone that comes in at a lower price point, Apple would have to make some compromises, such as dropping the expensive laser emitter used by the Face ID authentication system and replacing it with a cheaper in-screen fingerprint reader.

But after making a big deal of switching from fingerprints to facial recognition, can Apple market in a way that doesn't feel like an ugly compromise?

It's a delicate balance between giving people a handset that feels high-end and modern, but at a price that budget-conscious consumers are willing to pay.

That's a tough balance. And Apple doesn't have a lot of experience in this arena.

Would you buy an iPhone that featured a fingerprint reader instead of Face ID if it meant a cheaper iPhone? Let me know below!

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