Apple May Proceed with Cheaper Unsubsidized iPhone Next Year
According to the latest informed word on the streets, Apple will begin offering an unsubsidized iPhone in 2013, possibly for as low as $200 by next year at this time.
The outcome of that move could be a significant spike for Apple in emerging markets, where Apple is massively losing ground to Google. In these markets, less expensive Android devices are flooding the landscape and lending considerably to Android's climb in global market share.
Piper Jaffray analyst Gene Munster said Friday that Apple is now expected to slash the unsubsidized cost of existing iPhone models to somewhere in the neighborhood of $200 within the next twelve months. That's down dramatically from the current $375 unsubsidized price for the 8GB iPhone 3GS.
If this scenario plays out as expected, Munster believes Apple's global smartphone share will climb from 20 percent (in 2012) to 32 percent (in 2015). "We believe it is becoming increasingly possible for Apple to build the low end iPhone for $130-150, which would suggest a 25-35% gross margin," Munster told investors today. "While some investors may not like the margin dilution from a cheaper iPhone, we believe that view misses the bigger market share picture."
Source: Wall Street Cheat Sheet