06/08 Update below. This post was originally published on August 03
Apple leaks have always agreed on one thing: iPhone 14 models are more and more expensive. That is, until now.
in a new blog postAnonymous leaker Lanzuk has revealed that Apple has “decided to freeze the launch price of the iPhone 14 base model through a decision from the highest executive level.” And given Lanzuk’s strong track record, there’s every reason to believe this.
Lanzuk explains that Apple’s decision was based on “the stagnation of the global mobile phone market and the decline in demand… so the price of the basic model is frozen despite some factors of price increase.”
Detailed by other leaks, these factors include an increase in component prices due to shortages and Apple updating several key elements of the iPhone 14 lineup. Most notably, an all-new front-facing camera module from LG Innotek, whose leaks claim to be triple the price of its predecessor.
Lanzuk is no doubt aware of the potential shock and disbelief his news will generate and stresses that his information comes from a solid source within a “major US financial institution.” In addition, Lanzuk has a track record that deserves respect. Although the informant has had the occasional ladythere have been a number of pinpoint leaks for Apple and Samsung devices in the past year.
08/05 Update: More information about the iPhone 14 launch has leaked, and it’s more good news. Influential analyst and industry insider Ming-Chi Kuo reports that Apple has successfully expanded production of the next base model in India ahead of launch.
“Foxconn’s iPhone production site in India will ship the new iPhone 14 6.1″ almost simultaneously with China for the first time in the second half of 2022 (India was a quarter or more behind in the past),” Kuo explained. In the short term, India’s iPhone capabilities/shipments still have a considerable gap with China, but it is an important milestone for Apple in building an iPhone production site outside of China.”
My contacts believe this strategy will pay off immediately, with Apple able to supply a substantial quantity of the iPhone 14 for its September launch. This is in stark contrast to the current supply chain issues facing the iPhone 14 Max. While Kuo expects the new 6.7-inch model to launch alongside the rest of the range, Ross Young, CEO of Display Supply Chain Consultants (DSCC), warned that “iPhone 14 Max panel shipments [are] still way behind until august.”
So if you’re planning to buy Apple’s most affordable big-screen iPhone to date, I suspect you’ll have to act fast when they go on sale.
08/06 Update: Speaking with me today, popular tipster AppleLeaksPro says the new prices line up with what he’s been hearing for several months. “The Pros are substantially more expensive to make,” LeaksApplePro explained, citing the new hole-punch display, improved 48MP camera, stainless steel chassis (which has been a cost differentiator since the iPhone XS), and A16 chipset.
“There are a lot of differences,” the leaker told me, saying the expectation is that Apple will focus primarily on the iPhone 14 Pro models at launch. “I guess Apple will talk little to nothing about the iPhone 14.”
AppleLeaksPro says that the engine behind all this is “Differentiation”. This ties in with similar moves Apple has made to increase the price and feature differences between the standard and Pro models of iPad, Mac, and MacBook in recent years. The strategy has proven to be successful, even if it is more difficult to identify any features that make the iPhone 14 Pro models objectively professional.
All of which means that a split is opening up in the leak community. Last month, leading analysts at Wedbush explained that price increases across the range were inevitable because “prices have been rising throughout the supply chain and Cupertino needs to pass these costs on to the consumer in this launch.”
From what I understand, there is some truth to both positions. Supply chain pressure is driving up costs, as are several new components in the iPhone 14 range (particularly new front cameras).
That said, I understand that Apple is also determined to make 2022 the year it drives differentiation between Pro and non-Pro models, even if it means absorbing some of the cost increases in the standard models. This is a major factor behind the iPhone 14’s similarity to its predecessor, both in design and performance, and the updates are likely to be smaller than any previous generational iPhone update.
As a result, expect this to be one of the most controversial iPhone launches in recent years.
If correct, Lanzuk’s claim would mean the iPhone 14 retains its starting price of $799 (instead of going up to $899), which also raises hope that the new iPhone 14 Max will also be priced $100 lower. at $899. These price points make sense, given Apple’s determination to expand the feature and performance gap to the iPhone 14 Pro models, which are still expected to go up in price:
- iPhone 14 Pro – $1099 (iPhone 13 Pro $999)
- iPhone 14 Pro Max – $1199 (iPhone 13 Pro Max $1099)
Also, I’d say that Lanzuk’s claim still equates to an effective $100 price increase across the range. That’s because the $799 iPhone 14 will replace the $699 iPhone 13 Mini as the base model, and the $899 iPhone 14 Max will replace the $799 iPhone 13. Given their respective increases in screen size, these increases are also easier. for Apple to market to customers.
Will the iPhone 14 lineup be worth it? Design, camera and performance updates on the Pro models it certainly looks like it, but with a potential transition from Lightning to USB-C in 2023 I’d still advise caution if you don’t have to upgrade this year.
Follow Gordon on Facebook
More about Forbes