Cheap iPhone 4 Coming In Weeks - InformationWeek

InformationWeek is part of the Informa Tech Division of Informa PLC

This site is operated by a business or businesses owned by Informa PLC and all copyright resides with them.Informa PLC's registered office is 5 Howick Place, London SW1P 1WG. Registered in England and Wales. Number 8860726.

Mobile // Mobile Devices
03:45 PM
Eric Zeman
Eric Zeman

Cheap iPhone 4 Coming In Weeks

A less expensive iPhone 4 with only 8GB of storage is already being manufactured in Asia, reports say. Sprint looks to be in line to distribute the iPhone 5.

When Apple gets around to announcing the iPhone 5 at some point in the next five weeks, it will already have a lower-cost option available to consumers. Citing sources familiar with Apple's plans, Reuters contends that an 8-GB version of the iPhone 4 will hit store shelves before the end of September.

This would follow a pattern set by Apple for years. When it debuted the iPhone 4 in June 2010, Apple dropped the price of the iPhone 3GS with 8 GB to $99. The 8-GB iPhone 3GS is still available for $99, leaving those who can't afford the more expensive $199 and $299 models with a least a foot in the iPhone door, so to speak.

It comes as no surprise that Apple would do something similar this year. It makes perfect sense for Apple to debut a $99 iPhone 4 with 8 GB of storage alongside whatever the iPhone 5 turns out to be. If Apple sticks to its playbook, the iPhone 5 will be available with 16 GB and 32 GB of storage for $199 and $299, respectively.

What's not clear is if other components of the cheap-o iPhone 4 also will be downgraded. There have been reports in recent weeks that the glass surfaces on the front and back of the iPhone 4 will be replaced with less expensive plastic.

One analyst, however, believes it may be impossible for Apple to manufacture an iPhone 4 for $99.

"Apple may want to push into the emerging market segment, where customers want to switch to low- to mid-end smartphones from high-end feature phones, which usually cost $150 to $200," Yuanta Securities analyst Bonnie Chang told Reuters. "But I think for an 8-GB iPhone 4, the price is hard to go below $200, so Apple will still need a completely new phone with low specifications for the emerging markets."

Switching gears, the Wall Street Journal is reporting that Sprint will carry both the iPhone 5 and the iPhone 4 in October. Reports have suggested since April that the next version of the iPhone will be a world phone--supporting both GSM and CDMA networks. In order for Sprint to offer the iPhone 5, Apple needs to create a version supporting CDMA. It already does this for Verizon Wireless. (Sprint has lamented its lack of iPhone as cause for poor financial performance in recent quarters.)

A dual-mode iPhone 5 could support the networks of all the national U.S. carriers, AT&T, Sprint, T-Mobile, and Verizon Wireless.

The Journal reports that the iPhone 5 will launch on AT&T, Sprint, and Verizon Wireless's networks in mid-October. It will be thinner than the iPhone 4 and have a better camera, but will look similar.

At the 2011 InformationWeek 500 Conference, C-level executives from leading global companies will gather to discuss how their organizations are turbo-charging business execution and growth--how their accelerated enterprises manage cash more effectively, invest more wisely, delight customers more consistently, manage risk more profitably. The conference will feature a range of keynote, panel, and workshop sessions. St. Regis Monarch Beach, Calif., Sept. 11-13. Find out more and register.

We welcome your comments on this topic on our social media channels, or [contact us directly] with questions about the site.
Comment  | 
Print  | 
More Insights
AI Regulation: Has the Time Arrived?
John Edwards, Technology Journalist & Author,  2/24/2020
Fighting the Coronavirus with Analytics and GIS
Jessica Davis, Senior Editor, Enterprise Apps,  2/3/2020
IT Careers: 10 Job Skills in High Demand This Year
Cynthia Harvey, Freelance Journalist, InformationWeek,  2/3/2020
White Papers
Register for InformationWeek Newsletters
Current Issue
IT Careers: Tech Drives Constant Change
Advances in information technology and management concepts mean that IT professionals must update their skill sets, even their career goals on an almost yearly basis. In this IT Trend Report, experts share advice on how IT pros can keep up with this every-changing job market. Read it today!
Flash Poll