Apple leaks consistently agree on one thing: iPhone 14 models are getting more expensive. That is, until now.
In a new blog post, anonymous leaker Lanzuk revealed that Apple has “decided to freeze the launch price of the base model of the iPhone 14 through a decision at the highest executive level.” And given Lanzuk’s solid experience, there is every reason to believe it.
Lanzuk explains that Apple’s decision was based on “stagnation of the global mobile phone market and falling demand … so the price of the base model is frozen despite some price hike factors.”
Detailed by other leakers, these factors include an increase in component prices due to Apple’s shortage and update of several key elements of the iPhone 14 range. Most notably, a brand new front camera module from LG Innotek, which according to the leaks is triple the price of its predecessor.
Lanzuk is undoubtedly aware of the shock and potential disbelief his news will generate and points out that his information comes from a solid source within a “major US financial institution”. Furthermore, Lanzuk has a track record that deserves respect. Although the insider has had some occasional mistakes, there have been a number of accurate leaks for Apple and Samsung devices over the past year.
Update 08/05: More information has leaked about the launch of the iPhone 14, and that’s another good news. Ming-Chi Kuo, influential analyst and industry insider relationships that Apple has successfully expanded production of the next base model in India prior to release.
“Foxconn’s iPhone manufacturing site in India will ship the new 6.1” iPhone 14 almost simultaneously to China for the first time in 2H22 (India was a quarter or more behind in the past), “explained Kuo. “In the short term, the Indian iPhone capacities / shipments still have a significant gap with China, but it is an important milestone for Apple in building a non-Chinese iPhone manufacturing site.”
My contacts believe this strategy will yield immediate payoff, with Apple being able to provide substantial stock of the iPhone 14 for its September release. This contrasts sharply with the continuing supply chain problems faced by the iPhone 14 Max. While Kuo expects the new 6.7-inch model to launch alongside the rest of the range, Ross Young, CEO of Display Supply Chain Consultants (DSCC) warned that “iPhone 14 Max panel shipments [are] still far behind until August. ”
So, if you plan on buying Apple’s most affordable big-screen iPhone to date, I suspect you’ll have to move fast when they go on sale.
Update 08/06: Speaking to me today, popular tipster AppleLeaksPro says the new prices are in line with what he has been hearing for several months. “The Pros are substantially more expensive to produce,” LeaksApplePro explained, citing the new perforated display, the updated 48MP camera, the stainless steel chassis (which has been a cost differentiator from the iPhone XS) and the A16 chipset.
“There are a lot of differences,” the leaker told me, saying the expectation is that Apple will focus primarily on the iPhone 14 Pro models at launch. “My guess is that Apple will talk little or nothing about the iPhone 14.”
AppleLeaksPro claims that the driver behind all of this is “differentiation”. This ties in with similar moves Apple has made to increase the price and feature differences between the standard and Pro models of the iPad, Mac, and MacBook in recent years. The strategy proved successful, although it is more difficult to pinpoint any feature that makes the iPhone 14 Pro models objectively pro-oriented.
All of this means that a division is opening up in the leak community. Last month, well-known Wedbush analysts explained that price increases across the range were inevitable because “Prices have gone up along the entire supply chain and Cupertino has to pass these costs on to the consumer in this release.”
From what I understand, there is some truth in both positions. Pressure in the supply chain is driving up costs, as are several new components in the iPhone 14 range (in particular new front cameras).
That said, I understand that Apple is also determined to make 2022 the year it drives the differentiation between Pro and non-Pro models, even if that means swallowing some of the cost increases in the standard models. This is a significant factor behind the iPhone 14’s similarity to its predecessor, in both design and performance, with arguably smaller upgrades than any previous generation iPhone upgrade.
Consequently, expect this to be one of the most controversial iPhone launches in recent years.
If correct, Lanzuk’s claim would mean the iPhone 14 holds its $ 799 asking price (instead of jumping to $ 899), which also gives hope that the new iPhone 14 Max will also be priced at $ 100 lower. at $ 899. These price points make sense, given Apple’s determination to widen the feature and performance gap over the iPhone 14 Pro models, which are expected to increase in price anyway:
- iPhone 14 Pro – $ 1099 (iPhone 13 Pro $ 999)
- iPhone 14 Pro Max – $ 1199 (iPhone 13 Pro Max $ 1099)
Also, I’d say Lanzuk’s claim still equates to an actual $ 100 price increase across the range. That’s because the $ 799 iPhone 14 will replace the $ 699 iPhone 13 Mini as an entry-level model and the $ 899 iPhone 14 Max will replace the $ 799 iPhone 13. screen, even these increases are easier for Apple to market to customers.
Will the iPhone 14 lineup be worth it? The design, camera, and performance upgrades on the Pro models certainly look like that, but with a potential transition from Lightning to USB-C in 2023 I still urge caution if you don’t need to upgrade this year.
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