Complex Made Simple

New iPhone 11 series revealed – A cheaper price tag?

Apple has unveiled its new line of iPhones, and the new prices have come as a surprise considering the trends of previous iterations.

The new devices are the iPhone 11, iPhone 11 Pro, and iPhone 11 Pro Max You're looking at a $699 price tag, all the way up to $1,449 Apple is putting more emphasis on its services and subscriptions like Apple TV+

It’s that time of year again. Another September brings with it another new iPhone reveal. Long gone are the roman numerals – seems we’re back to good old solid digits. So yes, this year, we were spared from having to mumble out iPhone XI, and instead we get iPhone 11, iPhone 11 Pro, and iPhone 11 Pro Max. 

But does this ‘bold’ foray to a two digit name bring with it similarly ‘bold’ new features? Well, not really. In fact, the price is what’s most intriguing. (You can check the features here)

Price-cutting… more or less

A surprise revelation of yesterday’s iPhone reveal was the price: these new devices were somewhat cheaper than their predecessors, which should speak volumes about last year’s much-maligned heavy price tag. When rivals were manufacturing phones with similar (or better) features and charging for less, customers took notice. While Apple has often charged more than its rivals (which is part of the prestige appeal of Apple devices), their price tags had reached the astronomical for devices that were merely increments better than their predecessors, and not much different from cheaper competitor phones. 

This year’s prices: 

-iPhone 11: starting from $699 (iPhone XR started from $749)

-iPhone 11 Pro: starting from $999 (iPhone XS also started at $999) 

-iPhone 11 Pro Max: starting from $1099 (iPhone XS Max started $1,099, and reached 1,449 for full specs)

Image: Apple. Screenshot by The Verge

A price drop was a common trend among the rest of Apple’s products and services. 

“The third generation Apple Watch costs $199, the first time Apple has sold a version of its wearable gadget for under $200,” CNN writes. “The new iPad costs $329. And the company is charging $5 per month each for Apple TV+ and Arcade, its new streaming and gaming subscription services (which is cheaper than some competitors’ offerings, such as upcoming Disney+ streaming service).”

We wrote about this last month, when we discussed how Apple was realizing it can’t rely on hardware sales like those of the iPhone to solely carry its business anymore. Neither would the iPad and Apple Watch cut it either. Quarterly results were showing this time after time. People weren’t upgrading phones as often as they used to, given the slowing of innovation and incremental upgrades year after year, also considering the bump in prices. Apple needed to figure out a way to sell its existing consumers more – as is the case today in this consumerist world. The answer?

Services and subscriptions. Apple today is putting much more emphasis on things like Apple TV+, its new game streaming Arcade subscription, and more to keep its cash flow running.   

A small side note: In a peculiar but interesting study by online discounts site Picodi, it was discovered that it would take 8.3 days for an average Emirati to save up for the new iPhone. The Swiss, on the other hand, should be able to afford iPhone 11 Pro in only 4.8 days, whereas Mexicans would have to work for 54.2 days. 

So with its 2019 iteration of the iPhones, will Apple be winning over the world over again? It’s not certain to do so. Its services, however, could tell a different story. With the attractive pricing its offering, Apple could win over new (and old) customers, and bolster its weakening finances. Apple stock witnessed a small 0.9% bump in share value following yesterday’s keynote.