Track the companies that matter to you. It's FREE! Click one of these fan favorites to get started: Apple; Google; Ford.



Will Apple Discontinue the iPhone 5s When the iPhone 6 Launches?

When Apple (NASDAQ: AAPL  ) held its annual iPhone product launch last September, it did something that it had never done before. Instead of making the prior-generation iPhone 5 available at a $100 discount to the new iPhone 5s, it discontinued the iPhone 5 and in its place launched the iPhone 5c. Will Apple do the same thing this year, or will the iPhone 5s continue on as the "cheap" iPhone?

What Apple is likely to do
Looking at Apple's product stack today, you'll see that it consists of the following:

  • iPhone 4s (8GB) – free with contract.
  • iPhone 5c – starts at $99 with contract
  • iPhone 5s – starts at $199 with contract

With Apple allegedly planning to launch two iPhone models – the 4.7-inch iPhone 5s replacement and the 5.5-inch model that will presumably sit atop the 4.7-inch model in the pricing stack – the lineup could look as follows:

  • iPhone 5c – free with contract
  • iPhone 5s – starts at $99 with contract
  • iPhone 6 – starts at $199 with contract
  • iPhone 6L (the "L" stands for "Large") – starts at $299 with contract

With this product lineup, Apple addresses the full spectrum of smartphone users. Want a premium 4.7-inch handset? Apple's got it. Want a "phablet"? Apple's got that too. Prefer a smaller – but still high-quality – smartphone? The iPhone 5s is still great. Even the 5c, which was widely panned for being too expensive, suddenly becomes a much better deal with such a pricing scheme.

What does this mean for investors?
Although all of the excitement is -- understandably, of course -- centered around the upcoming iPhone 6 model(s), it's important not to lose sight of the fact that not everybody is going to be buying phones at the $199 unsubsidized price point. Having a compelling product line up at as many price points as possible is going to be key to bringing as many users into the iOS ecosystem as possible.

Interestingly enough, the product stack above could be the "first" in Apple's history. Not only will the company have a legitimate answer to parts of the high end that Apple hadn't really addressed previously (perhaps seven driving a net ASP uplift with the iPhone 6 models), but pushing the 5s and the 5c down will start to erode the value propositions of some of the lower-end Android phones.

In short, Apple is casting a much wider net.

Foolish bottom line
Quite frankly, it will be exciting to see what Apple's market share in the smartphone market looks like post-iPhone 6. Not only will Apple now have available to it the Android users that have been eagerly awaiting a larger iPhone to switch back, but Apple will be able to offer extremely high quality products into the lower end of the segment. 

Oh, and to answer the title of this article, it seems unlikely that Apple will discontinue the iPhone 5s following the iPhone 6 launch, as it just makes far too much sense to keep it as part of an expanded product portfolio. 

Leaked: Apple's next smart device (warning, it may shock you)
Apple recently recruited a secret-development "dream team" to guarantee its newest smart device was kept hidden from the public for as long as possible. But the secret is out, and some early viewers are claiming its everyday impact could trump the iPod, iPhone, and the iPad. In fact, ABI Research predicts 485 million of this type of device will be sold per year. But one small company makes Apple's gadget possible. And its stock price has nearly unlimited room to run for early in-the-know investors. To be one of them, and see Apple's newest smart gizmo, just click here!

Read/Post Comments (1) | Recommend This Article (1)

Comments from our Foolish Readers

Help us keep this a respectfully Foolish area! This is a place for our readers to discuss, debate, and learn more about the Foolish investing topic you read about above. Help us keep it clean and safe. If you believe a comment is abusive or otherwise violates our Fool's Rules, please report it via the Report this Comment Report this Comment icon found on every comment.

  • Report this Comment On July 15, 2014, at 11:06 PM, jjc0319 wrote:

    I hope Apple doesn't offer the 5C for free. I'd prefer to see:

    iPhone 5C @ $49

    iPhone 5S @ $149

    iPhone Air @ $249 (4.7" Version)

    iPhone Pro @ $299 (5.5" Version)

    Free is for Android & Microsoft phones.

Add your comment.

Sponsored Links

Leaked: Apple's Next Smart Device
(Warning, it may shock you)
The secret is out... experts are predicting 458 million of these types of devices will be sold per year. 1 hyper-growth company stands to rake in maximum profit - and it's NOT Apple. Show me Apple's new smart gizmo!

DocumentId: 3027225, ~/Articles/ArticleHandler.aspx, 9/5/2015 8:22:39 AM

Report This Comment

Use this area to report a comment that you believe is in violation of the community guidelines. Our team will review the entry and take any appropriate action.

Sending report...

Ashraf Eassa

Ashraf Eassa is a technology specialist with The Motley Fool. He writes mostly about technology stocks, but is especially interested in anything related to chips -- the semiconductor kind, that is. Follow him on Twitter:

Today's Market

updated 11 hours ago Sponsored by:
DOW 16,102.38 -272.38 -1.66%
S&P 500 1,921.22 -29.91 -1.53%
NASD 4,683.92 -49.58 -1.05%

Create My Watchlist

Go to My Watchlist

You don't seem to be following any stocks yet!

Better investing starts with a watchlist. Now you can create a personalized watchlist and get immediate access to the personalized information you need to make successful investing decisions.

Data delayed up to 5 minutes

Related Tickers

9/4/2015 3:59 PM
AAPL $109.27 Down -1.10 -1.00%
Apple CAPS Rating: ****