Apple will lose iPhone sales with battery replacements

Apple is left cleaning up after itself after addressing how it slows older iPhones to protect the device from malfunctioning — all without telling anyone in the meantime. The bad news is that it probably won’t be able to make money from upgrades for some time thanks to its amelioration efforts. The good news? Apple will still end up as one of the most trusted brands in technology.

Barron’s picked up on a note from Mark Moskowitz of Barclays projecting a “significant” draw from iPhone sales in favor of subsidized battery replacements at $29 apiece starting immedately. The thinking is that those holding older iPhones (the iPhone 6, 6s, 7, respective Plus models and SE) who may have eventually upgraded to a newer iPhone within the next year or so has been incentivized to take the discounted repair — the iPhone should detect that a new battery has been placed and that the processor should work at full blast again.

“Due to the large base, even a small percentage opting for battery replacement over upgrade could have meaningful impact on iPhone sales,” Moskowitz writes.

On a conservative estimate of a 519 million eligibility base for these discounted repairs as of the end of 2017, Barclays models a 10 percent adoption rate over the course of the year and a 30 percent drop in upgrades. This could mean a sales impact of 16 million new units in 2018, creating about a 4 percent or $10.3 billion slip from the bank’s forecast for iPhone revenues.

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Jules Wang
Jules Wang is News Editor for Pocketnow and one of the hosts of the Pocketnow Weekly Podcast. He came onto the team in 2014 as an intern editing and producing videos and the podcast while he was studying journalism at Emerson College. He graduated the year after and entered into his current position at Pocketnow, full-time.