Talks of a cheaper, smaller iPhone got a fresh layer of weight this week, after a former chief executive of Apple gave his two cents on why it might be good idea.
John Sculley, who helmed Apple between 1983 and 1993, told Bloomberg that the iMaker, now led by Tim Cook, “needs to adapt to a very different world” as millions of feature phone owners in emerging markets increasingly look to cheaper smartphones because high-end kits are almost always priced beyond their reach.
He explained: “As we go from $500 smartphones to even as low, for some companies, as $100 for a smartphone, you’ve got to dramatically rethink the supply chain and how you can make these products and do it profitably.”
While not an outright endorsement of the so-called ‘iPhone mini, Sculley’s comments certainly pose the question what Apple stands to gain from releasing such a device.
Many would argue it’s the premium price of the iPhone that makes it so covetable in the first place. It’s also the reason why Apple makes the lion share of profits of all the top mobile manufacturers.
Still, even if Apple can financially afford to ignore the cheap smartphones space, shunning it completely might not be a wise decision in the long run. This is because for many buyers, brand loyalty starts with the first product they own and very often these are entry-level devices.
It’s one of the reasons why Samsung has become so successful as a mobile manufacturer, by catering to the different stages of a customer’s purchase journey. If Apple wants to remain successful and stop losing market and mind share to Samsung, it needs to be in both ends of the spectrum as well.
Do you share John Sculley’s view? Let us know in the comments section below.