Apple iPhone 5C And The Market Implications

apple iphone 5c

The Apple event at Cupertino created a media frenzy around it, in a way that only an Apple event can. However this time the frenzy wasn’t around what was coming up in the event because most people already knew what was in store from the event. However the frenzy was definitely around whether Apple would be doing a first in its history by launching a cheaper iPhone and if yes, would it resemble the cheap looking phone from the leaks.

The questions were answered during the launch. And no, the cheaper phone did not look cheap as according to our vivid imagination. The Apple iPhone 5C touted as Apple’s first cheap phone actually looked good. But the dilemma that arises now is that is it good enough to be an Apple and cheap enough to say it’s cheap for a consumer?

To be fair to Apple, the iPhone 5C is a decent phone meeting all requirements of its market standards and to top it all it does have Apple’s brand name on top of it.  However compared to Apple’s innovation and premium standards this phone definitely falls short. While the logic behind this is the reduced price, the fact again stands that it is actually not so cheap to be available below the well respected Android phones in the market including a few from Samsung, Apple’s primary competitor now.

What Has Apple Done With The iPhone 5C?

  • As expected Apple released two designs instead of its customary single launch a year. And both of these designs have been launched as complete replacement of the earlier Apple iPhone 5 in the market.
  • Although touted as comparatively cheap, when it comes to transition to the market, the cheaper Apple iPhone 5C goes to a price which is at par with a high price margin phone.
  • Apple released most of its productivity suite for free along with the loading of iOS 7 into its newer devices including the iPhone 5C.
  • Apple iPhone 5C breaking away from tradition has been launched in vibrant colors.

Market Implications:

With all the above moves that Apple has made with these launches and from the current market reports, it definitely seems like Apple has made a golden move with 9 million new iPhone sets being sold out within a mere time from their launch. But the question that stays, is it really so?

While the response has definitely been overwhelming, most of the demand has been for the premium grade, Apple iPhone 5S while the response for the aspiringly cheaper Apple iPhone 5C has been less than expected. In short the overall demand generated in the market currently has been largely because of the Apple iPhone 5S while the demand for the Apple iPhone 5C has been underwhelming.

To elaborate, Apple has always done well with its premium devices and that is what is being repeated as of now. It is going stronger with the Apple iPhone 5S. However the iPhone 5C which has been the talk of the town since it was expected to be a first cheaper device from Apple hardly makes it as a market mover. The reason simply being that:

With reduced design features such as downgrade to polycarbonate from aluminium Apple tried bringing down the cost of the iPhone 5C, so as to make an entry level market ready iPhone. However even with the design downgrades the Apple iPhone 5C still costs as much as premium Android device from Samsung. As such it beats its very purpose of launching the iPhone 5C.

What Apple inevitably has done in terms of the market with the Apple iPhone 5C is that:

  • It has brought out a phone which is expected to be an entry level market phone, but isn’t so because of its price.
  • The downgrades that it has effected into the iPhone 5C to bring down the price has made the iPhone nothing like an Apple product, implying it is a good phone but just not good enough to be hailed as something from Apple’s great product powerhouse.
  • Conclusively the iPhone 5C becomes a market misfit as well as a brand misfit because it fits neither the market it has been targeted at nor the brand it comes from.

In the end, to answer the prior question, the Apple iPhone 5C although a good phone is neither cheap enough to be called cheap nor is it good enough to be called an Apple.

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Written by Rupam

Rupam works with FindYogi, a consumer web startup from Bangalore, India. He works across human resources and marketing functions. An avid writer, he frequently puts his thoughts up on business, startups, markets, technology, human resources and the society. He can be followed on Twitter at @rupamRg

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