Apple leaks reveal shake up in iPhone pricing likely next year; $1,200 256GB iPhone 8?

“The news comes from two famously reliable sources: Mac Otakara which was the first site to state Apple would remove the headphone jack from the iPhone 7 (though I was first to predict it in 2014). And KGI Securities’ Ming-Chi Kuo who is widely regarded as ‘the best Apple analyst on the planet,'” Gordon Kelly writes for Forbes. “Together they complete two halves of an intriguing puzzle: what Apple will do with the iPhone in 2017 – and it is going to cost you.”

“Filling in its half Mac Otakara says Apple will once again only iterate with its 2017 iPhones and an ‘iPhone 7S’ and ‘iPhone 7S Plus’ will look virtually identical to every iPhone since the iPhone 6 in 2014,” Kelly writes. “But before you despair, in jumps Kuo who says the iPhone 7S and iPhone 7S Plus will only be the base models with an all new ‘iPhone 8’ at the top. This will feature a completely overhauled design with no home button, an OLED display, wireless charging and more.”

“Those already struggling to justify the cost of owning an iPhone should probably look away now, because the iPhone 7S and iPhone 7S Plus are expected to retain the current price points of the iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus ($649 – $969), while the iPhone 8 will sit above them both as the new flagship,” Kelly writes. “Would a circa $1200 256GB iPhone 8 seem overpriced?”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: iPhone is an aspirational device. The loaded flagship model should be priced aspirationally as it increases the perceived value of the brand all the way down the line. We’ll get what we can for our Jet Black 256GB iPhone 7 Plus units (should be a healthy price) and apply the proceeds toward purchasing units of Apple’s next-gen flagship outright, as usual. We just paid $1098 per unit ($969+$129 AppleCare+) per unit before tax, so $1200 wouldn’t be that shocking for the world’s most advanced pocket computer.

40 Comments

    1. I don’t believe it. If it is true, then soon Apple’s Angela Ahrendts will have turned Apple into such a luxury brand that it can no longer be said to make products for everyone.

    2. This is nothing but a controlled leak by Apple to stymie people from waiting for iPhone 8. It also serves to set the stage where customers will be more delighted when pricing for the iPhone is less than this.

    1. We agree again! That kind of pricing for a phone just stops making sense. I’ve got money to burn but wouldn’t buy it.

      A faster phone, at this point, is sort of pointless. The only lag experienced is in data connections (carriers, what gives?). Live photos were a neat gimmick. Will the screen be edge to edge? So what. Thinner? You can keep that. Significantly better battery life? Not in our lifetimes it seems after waiting several generations. For me, 128Mb is perfect for a phone, 256Mb more appropriate for an iPad to hold movies. Jet Black? Will have a light leather case on it for slippage already, so who cares.

      Know what would be neat? A phone that charges wirelessly when placed next to an iMac or laptop. Throw in keyboard which never needs batteries or connection and you’ve got something to upgrade for. Otherwise, think I’ll pass. If Apple sees fit to only upgrade its computers every 1000+ days, why should they expect we ought to purchase their devices any more frequently ourselves? Gravitating towards generation skipper (or more) here after years of annual upgrades/replacements.

    1. Unfortunately that’s now how price elasticity works.

      There is a small market for the bragging rights crowd, the ones Apple tried to reach with the $10k watch. Unfortunately there is little strategic point in doing so. The most affluent spenders already own iPhones. So by crafting a more expensive model that few can justify buying, Apple misses the opportunity to attract more customers into its ecosystem in emerging markets where Apple does have a fight on its hands getting sales traction (or past corrupt regulators). India and China both want cheaper phones with longer lasting batteries. They don’t want fancier cameras and headjack removal. Look at what sells there compared to North America. They are:

      1. Huawei
      2. OPPO
      3. BBK-vivo
      4. Lenovo
      5. Xiaomi

      http://www.gizmochina.com/2016/07/21/huawei-chinese-phone-market-q2-2016-trendforce/

      Notice Apple and Samsung aren’t even on the list. In China, Android has growing share, now over 84%. iOS has fallen below 15%. Apple would be wise to address this sooner rather than later.

        1. Apparently enough to stay in the game. Are Apple profits growing in China?

          Chinese companies are like Amazon. They slowly and methodically kill their competitors with “good enough” knockoffs and/or slim margins until the competition is left with a niche market or none at all. A decision by Apple to go even more high priced only plays into the strategy of the competition.

    1. The longer Apple takes to actually use LiquidMetal significantly in their products just gives the competition time to find/develop just-as-good or better alternative tech to use.

  1. That is a 24% increase over the iPhone 7 Plus pricing. It’s doubtful the components of wireless charging at a distance are going to be that much more expensive, unless that price includes the base transmitter.

    Another reason for the increase could be because of the all glass rumor. Will there be a display on both sides? If yes, does this mean the device will fold from an iPad size into an iPhone size?

        1. Here’s the relevant part of the report (issued 12.6):

          “Specifically, we believe Apple will need to raise the ASP of the OLED iPhone 8 line by ~$50 and keep the mix new phones to ~35% (close to current levels) to keep iPhone GMs stable (assuming a $25 BOM increase from OLED). Additionally, we believe, the services growth can also help offset this.”

  2. $1200 is absurd. Measured against the MacBooks it would give rise to charges of rip off and would do lasting damage to the brand even if a lower priced phone is available. With advances in design and production, phones should be getting less expensive, not more.

      1. Higo, don’t forget that product psychology is strong.

        If Apple continues to let its mainstream products stagnate as they are and then starts to introduce products only at the highest end of the market, then the backlash could be abrupt. it could very well lose the mindshare of the middle market that keeps the lights on.

        Extreme luxury goods are notorious for making a splash and then fizzling out soon. Kinda like a fancy gold Hermes band Apple Watch. Waste of Apple’s time to sell that kind of stuff.

    1. The display components of the iPhone 7 cost Apple $39. Some of the previous rumors have suggested the new iPhone will have a glass back and front. I’m postulating that the large price increase could be do to the fact that the glass back is also another display. A doubling of the display size would increase the overall display costs.

      If the device does has a display on the back then this probably means the device folds. This folding mechanism could contain additional components and costs. A foldable feature makes the device a convertible smartphone/tablet, which means the price increase would be justified.

      The wireless charging at a distance components are probably $10-$20 at most, so that wouldn’t justify a large iPhone price increase. Add-in the price of a plug-in-the-wall wireless transmitter and the investment in the iPhone increases.

      I doubt Apple is going to increase the price of the iPhone just because it looks different and has the same functionality of the current models. Even if they changed the design, and replaced the aluminum case with ceramic, the price increase wouldn’t be copacetic. There has to be some major new feature to justify that increase. Wireless charging at a distance, and/or a foldable form factor are some ideas.

  3. Why not $2,000. That’s a price you are willing to pay. Look, 5 year financing. Think of it as a car, you can trade it in, get a little money on it. And, if traded in, it can be resold. What’s the problem. It’s only 34 a month, for 5 years. That’s cheap!

  4. If the case was made out of the white ceramic and the guts were pretty much the same. Then the price would be justified.

    However instead of making fancy Pro phones, why not make Pro Macs that have a better chance of making higher prices sales.

    The phones cost too much, as its is. I buy a phone app very year and hold on to it for 4 years. As the price goes up it makes less echonomic sense.

    1. Because a TON of people want phones and with all the trade up deals, a lot will get them for nothing extra over their subscription payment.

      The number of folks that want a MacPro even if it beat ALL competition is minuscule by comparison.

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