Predictions on iPhone 2018 Releases
Tomorrow, Apple will release the latest and greatest versions of the iPhone. Since last year marked the first release of Hi, Middle, and Low models of iPhones, it’s worth considering if the demand for these segments of iPhones will behave the same as in 2017.
If you recall, last year was notable for the release of the iPhone X—the first $1,000 iPhone—as well as less expensive models. After all the speculation about whether anyone would pay that much for a phone, it turned out the answer was a very unexciting. . . “Some will.” But what was interesting was when. . . and to what degree. . . people reacted to various phones. The high-priced iPhone X was in hot demand up front, while the lower priced models collected dust. Over time, that flipped.
A potential explanation gives a window into the various customer segments of the iPhone. It may be that the “innovator” and “early adopter” segments went for the X, suffering the higher price to be on the cutting-edge. But, if you are buying the “latest and greatest”—especially in tech—the appeal of any individual product is short-lived.
Other “early majority” consumers, driven by a malfunctioning phone or some promotional inducement from a carrier later came on board to buy the lower priced models. The consumers don’t have to have the latest and greatest and are value-conscious.
If this is the case, Apple, carriers, and electronics retailers can use this information to best plan promotions, messaging, and targeting. For instance, if carriers can identify innovators and early adopters, they can likely get people to switch networks by offering a discount on the iPhone X—but only for a very limited time—with messaging that focuses heavily on the tech wizardry of the iPhone XR. Early majority customers can, on the other hand, be induced to another carrier by price discounts on the lower priced models over a longer period of time with messaging that focuses on reliability and value.