Tomorrow, Apple is expected to launch the iPhone 6. With anticipation building for the announcement, one question looms large: will we get two new iPhones, or one? Apple’s experiment to release two iPhones last year, the iPhone 5s and the cheaper iPhone 5c, was initially met with mixed reviews by critics, but resulted in record revenue the following quarter. Tomorrow the world will find out if Apple will repeat this strategy by launching multiple iPhones, or go back to releasing just one iPhone this year, the iPhone 6.
The iPhone 5, launched in 2012, is Apple’s most popular phone with a 27% share, but only leads its successor, the 5s, by a small (2%) margin. This is likely because most iPhones come with a cheaper price if the consumer locks into a two-year contract, putting the average consumer on a two-year upgrade cycle. With the new iPhones expected to be available for purchase later this month, the iPhone 6 will likely eat into the iPhone 5’s market share.
One interesting note is that the iPhone 5 is no longer available for sale on Apple’s website. In addition, the three-year-old iPhone 4s is now available free with a two-year contract, possibly indicating Apple’s attempt to gain traction at the lower end of the market, typically dominated by Android.
While the iPhone will have the larger share of consumers’ attention over the next month, there are a couple of interesting insights that can be gleaned from Apple’s iPad device share. Just like last year, the 3.5–year-old iPad 2 still enjoys its spot as the most popular model with a 29% share of all iPads. Compared to the iPhones, where the two-year-old iPhone 5 only slightly edges out the most recent iPhone iteration, the 5s, it seems that older iPads have more staying power. There are several reasons why this could be the case. The iPad 2 wasn’t discontinued until March 2014, three years after it was originally released. Also, unlike iPhones, iPads are not locked into carrier contracts, giving them a longer lifespan than a traditional smartphone.
Though history suggests that Apple will announce new iPads in late October, it will be interesting to see if Apple continues this annual trend given the stickiness of older models. There are currently four iPads on sale on the Apple website: the iPad (4th gen), which was re-launched in March 2014 when the iPad 2 was discontinued, the iPad Air, iPad Mini, and iPad Mini (2nd gen).
With the majority of the tech world focused on Apple products, it will be interesting to see what new devices Apple introduces. Surprises are nothing new for Apple, and everyone will get their first peek into their new lineup startingtomorrow.
Localytics is the leading analytics and marketing platform for mobile and web apps across more than 1.5 billion devices and 28,000 apps. Localytics processes 50 billion data points monthly. For this study, Localytics examined over 100 million iPhone and iPad models. The timeframe for this study was iPhones and iPads seen for the entire month of August, 2014.
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