Report: Apple working on smaller, cheaper iPhone model | iLounge News


Report: Apple working on smaller, cheaper iPhone model

Apple is working on a smaller, more affordable iPhone model aimed at narrowing the price gap between the iPhone and cheaper models running Android. Citing a person who has seen a prototype of the phone, Bloomberg reports that the new model would be roughly one-third smaller than the iPhone 4. The report also states Apple has considered selling the new model at $200 off-contract, which could allow some carriers to offer it for free, and has also aimed to unveil the new iPhone near mid-year, while noting that the introduction could be delayed or scrapped. In addition, it notes that Apple is working on a dual-mode iPhone which would work on both GSM and CDMA networks, as well as a technology called Universal SIM that would allow users to switch between carriers using software as opposed to needing to swap physical SIM cards.

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Now, being one of those weirdos who gets by just fine with a $10/month TrakFone, maybe I’m not necessarily the best judge of the mindset that drives your typical cell customer, but when the “cheap” iPhone and “expensive” iPhone cost exactly the same amount to own every month, does it really matter if the phone is free or $200 up front? The real cost is the $1680 (and up) that owning such a device hits your for over the length of the mandatory contract, not the $0 to $200 you pay for the phone itself. If I’m going to drop close to a down payment on a decent car for a roaming video game device, I might as well drop the $200 extra for the premium model.

Posted by Code Monkey on February 10, 2011 at 5:31 PM (CST)


$200 out of contract.
That means you could buy the phone for $200 cash without a contract. Total cost would be $200+whatever you pay for Calls and Data. If you only spend $10/month on calls/data, then your TCO for 24 months would be $200+240=440.

Posted by Dan Woods on February 10, 2011 at 10:54 PM (CST)


@2: Not really. Unless there’s some sort of magical transformation of the cellular cartels’ behavior, you will not be using an iPhone as an iPhone for $10 a month since you’re still going to have to have a data plan + calling plan, and, at least right now, that starts at about $50 a month before you even get into the bells and whistles of texting and SMS addons, never mind the premiums that most carriers hit you with for month to month versus contract.

You’ll just be trading the option of a $200 premium iPhone with contract + about $70/month for the ‘option’ of a $200 cheap iPhone and no contract + about $70/month. I’m sure there are those who will like the trade off, I’m just not sure there choice is a rational one.

Posted by Code Monkey on February 11, 2011 at 9:01 AM (CST)


@Code Monkey, supposedly competition is good and could bring down prices. “Supposedly”.

More importantly, I think we’ve heard the “smaller iPhone” rumor every year for the last three years. In fact, in general, I have a hard time buying into any rumors after the years of following iPhone progress, as it tends to just to disappointment on announcement day (not that I’d get fired up about a tiny iPhone). When Apple puts one out, I’ll believe it.

Posted by Dave on February 11, 2011 at 2:38 PM (CST)


More then likely it will be a smaller version of the touch.

Posted by sid32 on February 11, 2011 at 9:50 PM (CST)


A smaller iphone will only generate more customers towards apple in which apple then will hope that as they use the “smaller Iphone”, they will then upgrade to the “premium”. It’s a industry competing business to unleash potential products that will eventually lead to long term usage.

Posted by Jwall on February 13, 2011 at 1:56 PM (CST)


Code Monkey might want to remember, while it may not make sense financially to the user, a $249 “smaller” iPod mini is THE one product that had effectively broke the MP3 player market wide open for Apple, not any of the regular-sized iPods. Especially in Japan, the hype and resultant demand for the iPod mini was big enough to have the clout to terminate MiniDisc.

The iPhone while popular, is still in a stage very much like the 1G-3G iPods. If not Steve, then someone at Apple’s undoubtedly looking to replicate the ipod mini story with the iPhone, and later the iPad.

Steve may have philosophies about size and usability that are actually worth considering; most everyone else just says whatever will defend their products. Therefore I would never rule out expansions to the product line, even if Apple’s been the industry’s wisest in knowing which additions are futile and which might be worth their effort.

Posted by Leon formerly of Buffalo, New York on February 14, 2011 at 7:55 AM (CST)

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