iPhone X could fail to turn Chinese market around for Apple
It’s expected that the iPhone 8 and iPhone 8 Plus will price around the same as the iPhone 7 and 7 Plus have — $649 and $769, respectively. The iPhone X, though, with its OLED display, new design and 3D facial scanning, could cost either side of $1,000. These prices might end up being tolerable for many in higher median wage countries, especially with the advent of 24-month financing and carrier treats.
In China, where import costs can inflate prices by up to 20 percent, it will be more of a strain to encourage sales. That’s bad news for Apple.
Reuters reports that the credit market in China is still clad with scaffolds as smaller stores are deciding that they may not stock the iPhone X. Newer online outlets in the country have only started to implement installment plans and Apple itself has set up plans with the nation’s state-backed banks.
But even with those options available, $1,000 is still double the average monthly pay stub in China and some in the young professional demography isn’t eager to blow cash.
“I’ll wait for a drop in price, it’s too expensive,” said Angie Chen, 23, a project manager in Nanjing and iPhone 6 owner. “It’s a nice number to hear, but there’s no rush.”
“If it’s under $1,100 then I’ll buy it,” said Liu Song, 29, who’s employed at a financial tech startup in Beijing.
Many rumors on Weibo still refer to the iPhone X, the name of which was seen in leaked final code of iOS 11, as the iPhone 8. The word “eight” in Chinese is a homophone for the phrase “to get rich.” Somewhat of an irony when you realize that the iPhone’s market share, as measured by Counterpoint Research, has dropped to 9 percent in the first half of the year, down from 14 percent in 2015.