For business/enterprise, one effect of the pandemic WFH response has been suppressing tech refresh of cellphones at many large employers -- folks aren't traveling as much for business. I know leisure travel is getting back up to pre-pandemic times domestically in the US, but internationally it's still down overall, so maybe the average consumer use case for a new shiny iPhone is down as well? Also, annoyingly, Apple hasn't reintroduced fingerprint scanners (TouchID) to their phones like some others have, while at the same time FaceID continues not to work with face masks on. These and other anecdotes make me question whether this is cover for decreased demand, or at least decreased demand forecasts.
It seems that manufacturers are hesitant to include both for some reason, and in this (false?) dichotomy I would still prefer IR-based face unlock over fingerprint-based unlock. Facial recognition is admittedly inconvenient in a period of mask-wearing while in public (precisely when phone locks and efficient unlocking seem most beneficial IMO), but for all of the times when I'm not wearing a mask, I definitely much prefer it over fingerprint scanners for the invariance to hand position and environmental elements. Fingers that are either wet or overly dry seem to trip up scanners in my experience, and needing to touch the phone can be inconvenient in and of itself while cooking, wearing gloves, etc.
I know the advantages of Faceid, but for me it's more of a step back in many ways and it's not like Apple couldn't have put the touchId sensor behind the screen like every Android phone has been doing it for the last 4 years or so.
I think the "keep your phone for 2 years" is a thing of the past now. Back in the late 2000's and 2010's I remember when phones made massive leaps every year. The iPhone 3G was awesome until the 3GS came along and blew it out of the water, when the iPhone 4 came out it blew the 3GS out of the water. Back then upgrading to new devices carried some major benefits. The 3GS wasn't just "faster" than the "3G", it was very noticeably faster.
Nowdays thought, I can pick up a iPhone 13 and compare it to my iPhone 11. The 13 has better cameras, better battery life, and is more powerful. But it's not 3G -> 3GS powerful, when I picked up a 3GS for the first time I was blown away how much better it was than my 3G. When I looked at the iPhone 13 the other day I was hard pressed to find areas where it was better than my iPhone 11.
A lot of it has to do with the points _fat_santa brings up, and the points I laid out above, but a lot of it also probably has to do with the fact that I'm kinda over phones, too.
£160 for 3 years is a good deal.
TI owns fabs. They can prioritize Apple if they want and Apple would be throwing money at them to do so.
Broadcom doesn't own fabs and the AFEM is very unique in packaging as well as fabrication. That's likely to be the bottleneck.
However, here is the list of chips in the iPhone 13:
The chips that are most likely to snag would be anything from a fabless company on an advanced node.
iPhone prices have been fairly steady for the "regular" models:
Apple did introduce 'flagship' models with the iPhone X, but the same year they also had the iPhone 8 which was on the same trend line as the iPhones 4S to 7.
And to speak of the "iPhone 13" is kind of vague: you have the 13 mini 128GB at US$ 700, and the 13 Pro Max 1TB at $1600. On introduction, the 3G 16GB was $700 and the 4S 64GB was $850:
A more interesting question to me would be how the average buyer's cellular plan has shifted over that time — people tend to focus on the phone prices but not the greater monthly service charges.
Doesn't have to be day and date of release for apple to learn that they don't want to upgrade.
Most enterprise customers have customer management teams at apple and like, so they can easily learn that company [x,y,z] may not buy full fleet upgrades (or even partial fleet) and downscale manufacturing.
I bet that chip fab costs are high right now. If apple knows they can slow production down until next spring, they may chose to do that to save money.
Anyway the long wait times for devices make it pretty obvious this is a supply issue, not a demand issue.
This is in Sweden where we're taxed about 50% (I make 50% of what my employer pays for me), this might make us give away iPhones to employees like it's nothing.
Think of this: Employment tax, 30%, income tax 30%, value added tax for goods, 25%.
My employer doesn't have to pay either of these, but if I were to buy an iPhone I'd have to pay all of it. I imagine this affects how generous our employers are giving us "tax free perks".
I had to argue the case with my boss(CEO) to get a cheaper phone since I break them quite often and felt shameful bringing the bills in for repairs.
Now that I'm changing jobs my new employer asked "what gear do you want", I could get essentially whatever I wanted. Seems like a kitted System76 laptop and a Fairphone 4, is what I'll stick with.
TL;DR: Tax affects who gets what in what way.
I’d love to think the CSAM topic is relevant to this — as I’ve paused my own Apple upgrades (had intended on getting new phones, new iPads, and new MacBooks for the whole family), but there’s been radio silence on the topic since they announced their delay on that.
> FaceID continues not to work with face masks on
Well.... it does if you have an apple watch. I would still rather have a touch id option though.
As for touch authentication, there's still the SE so at least they still have that as an option in the lineup. The thing is they begin the design outline for new iPhones from 24 to 18 months in advance of launch. Even a 2 year pandemic is a temporary issue relative to the iPhone design cycle, and any design response they might make to it would only show up towards the end of the crisis anyway.
Even if they had brought out a pandemic influenced flagship design now, which is probably the earliest point possible, for how much of that device's lifetime would mask mandates be relevant? Here in the UK mask mandates are already on the way out thanks to high vaccine uptake.
* Yes, I know, only with iCloud enabled, and it nags you until you enable it.
Not that it's ever gonna happen.
If you had it on 3 year cycles, the first year would be a good year to buy, the second year would be ok, and the 3rd year would be a bad time to buy. And if another OEM released something that year, everyone who wanted to buy on year three would go with them since they have the best offering of that year.
I suspect a lot of people do which is why they release on this schedule.
Even with trade-in incentives, the vast majority of people don't get a new phone every year.
They simply do not change in a way that affects most people’s lives.
Each new car is incrementally a small upgrade, but accumulated over a few years, makes for a worthy improvement. Those incremental upgrades I don’t buy don’t make anything worse for me.
It’s not a set of incremental upgrades each year that eventually get to something new. The only time things change significantly is with new generations.
Do you have examples?
I know many people complain about battery degradation. But really, these phones are using about the most advanced batteries that are available in the relevant price range. They are degrading because you are using the device a lot. You really are. Are there any credible claims that batteries are degrading faster than "normal" given usage patterns?
I think this statement is overly generous to car manufacturers, who rarely provide software updates. Is that not motivated by an analogous planned obsolescence?
Not that I like the amount of resources we are wasting that way, but a whole lot of people buy a new version smartphone every year.
My personal cycle is about 4 years, and I do my best to take care of the battery so that I don't even have to replace that during that time.
I think this is true but for the opposite reason you do. The number is few because most people upgrade _less_ often, not more.
I don't use my phone that much so I can't think of important, game-changing things I would like to see besides unrealistic battery-life expectations.
At this point, backing Kickstarter projects is likely the only way to get a small phone made.
And even Apple seems to have a hard time selling smaller phones.
I'd like to see a satellite connection, ideally with gprs speeds (calling, chatting, podcasts, music, reading websites anywhere).
It would also be nice to have transflective displays that work in direct sun without using too much power.
Also I wonder whether power could be reduced so much that all-around solar panels can give u a small charge when being away from the grid.
That means everyone else won't be getting many of these chips at all before apples order is filled.
I am curious what the situation looks like at the major Chinese manufacturers? Even though they werre probably early in buying up supplies being afraid of US sanctions.
I've seen no sign of a shortage of new phones for sale online, so it doesn't seem the shortage is hitting too hard.
But we don’t know which chips are in s as shortage, it could be memory chips, display controllers, battery management chips. Plenty of ICs in an iPhone to pick from, and you can’t build an iPhone without them all.
I Apple would introduce a radically faster M2(+much faster GPU) and >32Gb ram, with decent connectivity options, I would probably not buy another mac for 12 years again. I already use my macs a long time.
Now everybody is willing to pay a premium as long as they can get parts.
Huh. Don’t know what to make of that.
Literally every year at this time, Bloomberg or the WSJ reports that Apple is due to cut production due to some negative factor or another.
So far it has always turned out to be complete bullshit. It’s pretty obvious that there are many parties who could benefit from such a rumor.
At the risk of being pedantic, your 2020 link is from April 27th, 2019 link is from January 29th, and your 2016 link is from January 6th. Only two of five - 2017/18 - are from this time of year.
There is a regular stream of these rumours which have proven to be empty so far. Perhaps the wolf will really come this time.
They don't all conform to the specific pattern you said, but the more general "media keeps reporting iphone production cut rumors" is certainly there.
Apple has not increased the prices of iPhones in 3 generations. They have removed the charger from the box, but they have also doubled the base storage size.
Apple stock hasn't cratered so the markets don't think much of this story.
> Literally every year at this time, Bloomberg or the WSJ reports that Apple is due to cut production due to some negative factor or another.
You shouldn't be downvoted for stating a fact. For every "fusion energy" story, we've had a "apple production cut" story.
Be ready for an interesting winter where people won’t be able to repair broken furnaces and will have to abandon homes. This could snowball infrastructure damage.
Response to pandemic about to get wild?