At a company conference on September 10, Apple CEO Tim Cook announced they are poised to release a New iOS 7 update for the iPhone and iPad. But what people are really excited about is the new iPhone lineup.
In the past, whenever Apple released a new iPhone, they opted to lower the cost of older phone models. This time, however, they’ve switched things up. The company is instead releasing two new models simultaneously: a high-end iPhone 5S in sleek metallic colors, which will retail for $199–$399, and a lower-cost iPhone 5C, retailing for $99–$299. The 5C is comes in a variety of bright and playful colors.
It’s a bold move for the company. First, their stock has fallen nearly 30 percent over the last year. Second, their competitors have raced to release comparable smartphones for a price tag far smaller than Apple’s flagship products, which has secured the more financially conservative crowd. Finally, they’ve only released prototypes that were developed under the legacy of Steve Jobs, leaving many people to question whether they will release another revolutionary product in the foreseeable future.
Consider also that Apple has built their contemporary image upon being the “alternative” technology option. Microsoft held an overwhelming majority of software and hardware sales for many years. While Apple was largely unused outside the graphics industry throughout the '90s, people had begun to purchase Apple products to avoid supporting Microsoft by the mid-2000s. It became a symbol of relevance and modernity to own an iPod or iPhone. Thus, Apple has been able to demand higher prices for their products — which in turn has left a lot of people with no other option but to purchase cheaper products.
Whether the inexpensive 5C or the luxury 5S will help Apple’s stocks increase again remains to be seen. Smartphone sales are growing immensely in countries such as China and India — and the company certainly hopes to increase sales in these countries by offering affordable, technologically advanced alternatives to current models — but Android still has control of these markets by far.
Personally, I think the 5C will be a success in the U.S., too. Many people, myself included, have iPhones that we paid way too much for. I’d be interested in investing in a cheaper version with upgraded software. And I know many of my friends and family members would be more inclined to purchase an iPhone if it cost less. Of course, you’ll always have the people who want the best of the best — and for them, a 5S might be a good investment.