How much will the folding iPhone cost? Research by UBS which has been reported by CNBC claims that Apple fans would pay an additional $600 for a folding iPhone. Before you start thinking thatâ€™s $1600 Â for the future top iPhone, there are other things to be taken into consideration.
Apple has always stretched credibility on pricing. And when I say always, that predates the iphone by a very long way. It predates the Macintosh, it predates the Apple /// all the way back to the Apple ][.
The UK price difference between a 128GB iPhone XR and a 2566GB one is Â£100, the price for a 128GB memory card is under Â£13. Appleâ€™s chutzpah knows no bounds. Apple charges more than seven times as much for a component when itâ€™s in the phone.
So if the respondents to the UBS survey say they will pay $600 then Apple will assume that they will pay a bit more. And thatâ€™s probably right. History has shown that what people say in surveys and what they are prepared to do is often wrong, and where the Apple must-have is in the frame people will go that much further.
They wonâ€™t just be going further than the $1000 iPhone of today. Apple is late to the party with both 5G and folding phones, so weâ€™ve got to wait until 2020 for the 5G phone and 2021 for the folding phone. Looking at what Apple has done with prices in the past, there was an industry shudder at the $1149 iPhone X in 2017 and yet Apple doubled down on the increases with the XS Max at $1449. If you plot the trend, just looking at the most expensive model in the portfolio at any one time, there is a steady growth. This makes the prospect of a $3,000 iPhone 5G fold look entirely reasonable.
It will also help to put space between Apple and its rivals. The original Motorola Razr was a $1000 phone, the hotly anticipated Razr fold is rumoured to be slated at $1500. With folding phones the next must-have we may well see other folding phones at between $1500 and $2500. Apple will charge at least $500 more because, well, Apple.
When you look at the timing and the numbers a $3000 iPhone in 2021 seems less outrageous than a $1200 iPhone in 2017.