(Photo : Reuters)
Although rumors have spread that Apple would bump up the iPhone 5's price in response to their court victory over Samsung, customers should most likely expect a set of choices similar to the iPhone 4S's offerings.
iPhone 5 Expected to Follow 4S Pricing
As Latinos Post reported on Tuesday, the iPhone 4S set a precedent when it priced the iPhone 4S at $199 bundled with a two-year contract. This sweet spot, meant to appeal to the budget smart phone consumer, laid the foundation for all future devices in the market. Further, the $199 price point is now home to the iPhone's strongest competitor, the Samsung Galaxy S III. If the iPhone 5 is unable to price match the S III, they would grant Samsung an edge in their endless war for market share.
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Research by Gartner shows that by the end of the 2012's second quarter, Samsung held worldwide market share of 21.6%, comprised of 90,432.1 units in the mobile device market. Meanwhile, Apple only holds 6.9% of international market share, with 28,935 devices in consumers' hands.
Considering that the Galaxy S III is not on the U.S. court's potential ban list, Apple must remain competitive. Had the S III been erased from the market, claims that the iPhone 5's price would rise would hold far more weight. The S III has sold more than 10 million units within 9 months.
Regardless of speculated price hikes, the iPhone's previous two iterations maintained identical prices for their base models. Without contracts the iPhone 4 and iPhone 4S share a $649 price point for their 16 GB base models, and a cost of $749 for 32 GB models. Although the iPhone 4S changed up the pricing model by bundling a $199 version of the smartphone with a two-year contract, the fact that both phones are placed at the same value without contracts reveals a consistency in Apple's pricing model. This pattern, in combination with a leading competitor who has also occupied the $199 price point, almost assuredly forces Apple to keep its base model as close to the Galaxy S III's cost as financially possible.
Without a contract, the cost of the high-storage iPhone 5 will likely be a high one, but if you are simply upgrading your phone or renewing your contract, don't be surprised if Apple sticks to what it knows.
iPhone 5 Predicted Specs
In terms of specs, the iPhone 5 is rumored to feature a smaller 8 or 9-pin dock, an A5X dual core processor, 1 GB RAM, an 8 megapixel rear camera, a 2 megapixel front-facing camera, an improved version of Siri, Near Field Communication (NFC), and a 4-inch Retina display with a 16:9 aspect ratio.
Leaked photos of the iPhone 5's battery display a smaller dock connect and a higher capacity, according to 9to5mac.com. According to the site, the iPhone 5's battery capacity will be 1440 mAh.
Speculation also points to the inclusion of LTE, made possible by a more efficient battery design for the iPhone 5.
Expect enhanced security measures on the iPhone 5 as well, complimenting iOS 6's passbook feature, which allows Apple customers to store financial data on their phones in order to make digital transactions.