Perhaps the biggest question going into Apple's (NASDAQ: AAPL ) Sept. 10 iPhone event is how much the alleged "iPhone 5C" -- otherwise known as the "cheap" iPhone -- will cost without a contract.
If it's priced too high, it'll likely limit the iPhone's growth potential in emerging markets. If it's priced too low, it could weigh on Apple's profit margin. Finding that happy balance will be key to pleasing users and shareholders alike.
According to KGI analyst Mingchi Quo, the iPhone 5C is expected to carry a price tag around $400 to $500. At those levels, it aligns well with a Morgan Stanley report that found $486 to be the sweet spot among Chinese consumers for the iPhone 5C. In other words, the iPhone 5C could be poised to do quite well in the Middle Kingdom (and presumably other emerging markets).
However, with two iPhone models currently falling near this contract-free price range, Fool contributor Steve Heller thinks the iPhone 5C may not be a home run product. Check out the video below to get his full thoughts on the issue.