Apple has begun marking down its standard iPhone prices to match reductions being offered by carriers and vendors in anticipation of the iPhone 5.
Apple stores Stateside are currently price-matching “market support-approved” competitive offers, as retailers and networks begin slashing the asking prices for the iPhone 4S and the iPhone 4 amid growing expectation for the sixth-generation kit.
The iGiant is offering a $49.01 (about £31 in proper money) concession for all current and last-gen iPhone variants purchased directly at its stores. This, to us, suggests that the clock is ticking on a new iPhone, especially considering it’s not known to give channel partners a generous advance notice of new product releases.
While price-matching is not an uncommon practice amongst manufacturers, Apple is not very explicit about its policy, leaving it up to Apple Store employees to give a discount if the customer can prove there’s a better deal elsewhere.
It’s as-yet unknown whether a similar move is being made in the UK (and the rest of the world), but we would be shocked if it weren’t.
The upfront cost of the iPhone 4S when purchased with a contract has already been slashed several times by UK networks at various times of the year, most recently by Vodafone, which is currently ranging the handset for £29 on a two-year £36 a month tariff.
The iPhone 5 is rumoured to make its debut on September 12th, featuring a taller, slimmer design, a larger, four-inch screen, a quad-core processor and an improved eight-megapixel camera.
Also mooted to be on board are NFC and 4G capabilities, plus a new ‘mini’ dock connector and an even smaller ‘nano’ SIM card.