Bigger, faster & excessively priced – but is it better?

If the vast majority of phone companies announced plans to charge nearly £1500 for a mobile phone, you’d be right to expect consumers to switch allegiances and look elsewhere. However, when it is Apple doing the announcing, enamoured fans of their slick products simply accept these price increases without hesitation, all in the name of proudly brandishing the latest model. Apple’s latest iPhone release appears no different as the faithful Apple congregation seem totally unperturbed by the price hike which makes the iPhone XS Max the most expensive in history. 

Yes, if you are completely obsessed with Apple products (iPod, MacBook, Apple Watch, etc) you will no doubt find the ease of syncing your products an attractive prospect, and yes, they are beautiful crafted and well-oiled machines. But how can this annual money-making charade still command such blind faith from consumers? Sure, if money is no object then this yearly upgrade will be nothing out of the ordinary, but I am sure we all know someone struggling financially who still manages to stump up a hefty fee for the new iPhone on the day it comes out. 

Here’s a breakdown of the costs for the new models:

  • iPhone XS - £999 (64GB), £1,149 (256GB) & £1,349 (512GB)
  • iPhone XS Max - £1,099 (64GB), £1,249 (256GB) & £1,499 (512GB)
  • iPhone XR - £749 (64GB), £799 (128GB) & £899 (256GB)

And if you still have change in your pocket from purchasing one of these moderately priced phones, you can opt for the upgraded, health-conscious Apple Watch which starts at a mere £399. Users will be notified on a 30% larger screen if their heart rate drops or increases above a normal level, and the watch will be able to detect whether the user has encountered a fall. It certainly won’t prevent the fall (though maybe you’d expect it to for the price!), but if the user is immobile for longer than a minute it will alert the emergency services of their location, as well as a personal point of contact chosen by the user. 

Has Innovation Taken a Backseat for Apple?

The new series of phones set to be released boast of bigger screens, more memory, a better battery life and a faster operating speed, but very little in the way of innovation has been added since the last launch a year ago. Of course, these incremental changes are a welcome addition to those who own an iPhone, however, not enough has been altered to warrant such a price increase. Apple have relied on the fact that their loyal customer base will be satisfied with simple and slight changes – and from our observations and predicted sales figures for the September 20th release, they would be right. For a company that effectively revolutionised the way in which we use and view our mobile phones, this latest instalment wreaks of complacency, especially when compared to what their Android counterparts are doing with their new products. 

Although the iPhone is Apple’s staple item and provides a large percentage of their sales, perhaps their approach to innovation has been focused on other products such as the Apple Watch. Apple CEO Tim Cook said they want to serve everyone and that “we always thought… if you provide a lot of innovation and… value, there is a segment of people who are willing to pay for it.” Yet this assertion doesn’t translate with the lacklustre innovation displayed in the new iPhones. 

That being said, with Apple becoming the first company to reach above $1 trillion dollars in market capitalisation, we doubt any of these shortcomings will realistically impact their success. So, perhaps this reveals more about their customer base and their purchasing habits than it does Apple’s strategy going forward with the iPhone.

Bigger, faster & excessively priced – but is it better?