Back when most people were on plans that saw them offered a new phone every two years, upgrading wasn’t really a decision. Paying typically $0-200, depending on your plan, saw you get the latest iPhone every other year. It would have been silly to turn it down because you’d pay the same monthly amount either way.
So the only decision most people made was whether to be on the main ‘tick’ cycle, with the new designs, or the ‘tock’ cycle that gave you the S model with the same design but new features.
But now that carriers split out phone costs from usage plans, upgrading your phone becomes a much more conscious decision. You could do it every year, paying more but always having the latest model. You could continue on a two-year cycle. Or you could save a decent chunk of money by sitting out a year.
That latter option might once have seemed unlikely for 9to5Mac readers, who typically like to stay up to date, but this year could potentially be very different …