low-cost Stories September 16, 2013

Nokia’s new camera-phones cost the same $29 as Apple’s iPhone 5c ‘Crocs’ CASE

While everyone was expecting Apple to introduce its new colourful iPhone 5c as a “lower-cost” option, Nokia today announced a truly low-cost device with its new $29 Nokia 108.

Compare that with the $29 Apple is charging for just the case-the one no one seems to like— for its low-cost offering. iLounge got theirs a little early and described it:

The silicone rubber case is lined with microfiber on the inside, and includes Sleep/Wake and volume button protection. It’s quite light, with the empty space left by a 5 x 7 grid of 5/16″ holes helping to keep the weight down, while also oddly exposing only portions of the iPhone 5c’s rear labeling.

Nokia’s camera phone does calls, text, video capture, and also includes an up to 32GB of memory, an MP3 player, FM radio, Snake the game, and battery life up to 31 days on standby. It also has colourful red, white, black, yellow and cyan back plates that can be removed and swapped for other colors.

As Benedict Evan’s wrote a few days ago, the disparity in what Apple and Nokia can get for their wares is quite striking.

low-cost Stories September 1, 2013

iPhone5C1

As Apple’s September 10th iPhone event approaches, a few new photos claiming to show packaged “iPhone 5Cs” and accompanying materials have surfaced online. The first photo comes from website iApps.im, and it purports to show several “iPhone 5C” units in packaging. The “iPhone 5C” is what many are calling Apple’s upcoming lower-cost, plastic-backed iPhone. The packaging in these photos appears to line up with a purported packaging leak from earlier this year

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low-cost Stories August 10, 2013

New mockups claim to show ‘iPhone 5S’ and ‘iPhone 5C’ designs [Gallery]

Vietnamese website Tinhte, which has a solid track record of getting its hands on pre-release Apple products and accurate mock ups,today posted what it claims are mock ups of two next-generation iPhones. One is the full-fledged “iPhone 5S” upgrade, while the other claims to show the much rumored low-cost “iPhone 5C” that we’ve been hearing a lot about recently. It’s worth noting that Tinhte says the source of the images, Vietnamese accessory supplier PhukienGiare, also supplied the publication with accurate pre-release mock ups of the iPad mini leading up to its launch.

For the iPhone 5S, the design of the mock up appears to be largely the same as the current iPhone 5. Most rumors seem to agree with that much, and the site notes its report from earlier this year that claimed the device will pack in a new 12-megapixel camera. The mock up also shows the dual LED flash that is rumored to make an appearance on the device.

The second mock up shows what the site is referring to the “iPhone 5C“, and shows the all-plastic design that we’ve seen several times in other alleged leaks. The site notes that the Lightning connector looks slightly smaller on the mock up, but it’s unsure if this is just on the mock up or if Apple is experimenting with tweaked connector designs. (The iPhone in the images with the leather skin is an iPhone 5 for comparison).

Earlier this week photographs leaked showing the iPad mini-like design for the next-generation 9.7-inch iPad that we posted of photos of back in January.

low-cost Stories August 1, 2013

5ccameramodule

With the lower-cost iPhone supposedly already in production, in time for launch later this year, the likelihood of parts leaking can only increase.  Earlier today, iPhone5skopen posted images of supposed front panels for the cheaper device. As shown by previous leaks, the faceplate is almost identical to an iPhone 5 with a plastic body being the main differentiating factor in the product lineup.

Now, Chinese site IT168 has posted pictures of supposed camera modules for this device  (via MacRumors). The site claims the sensor is the same as the one found in the iPhone 5, being 8 megapixels in resolution, albeit in a plastic casing. The inclusion of an eight megapixel sensor, rather than a five megapixel one as some expect, gives more weight to the idea this device is by no means a “budget” product. Recent reports have put the ‘cheap’ iPhone in a mid-range price bracket, around $350.

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low-cost Stories July 22, 2013

iPhone-5-demand-June-2013

New numbers out today from research firm Consumer Intelligence Research Partners (via AllthingsD) show that consumers in the U.S. are purchasing an increasing number of previous generation iPhones compared to recent years. It certainly helps make the case for a much rumored lower-cost iPhone, with the iPhone 4 capturing 18 percent of iPhones sold in the US during the June quarter, and the iPhone 4S an impressive 30 percent.

As noted by AllThingsD, the 52 percent of total iPhone sales captured by the iPhone 5 is much less than the iPhone 4S had just nine months into its release:

Nine months after the iPhone 5′s debut, it accounts for about half of all iPhone sales. The 4S still accounted for nearly three-quarters of iPhone sales almost a year after its launch.

While the obvious conclusion to draw from the data is an increased demand for a lower priced iPhone, CIRP’s Josh Lowitz thinks Apple could continue to take on the lower price market in the US with its previous generations of iPhones: expand full story

low-cost Stories June 20, 2013

Samsung shows off new additions to its Galaxy family including lower-cost Galaxy S4 Mini

Apple might not have any new mobile devices to show off until fall, but Samsung today introduced a number of new devices to its flagship Galaxy family. One of those devices was the new mid-range Galaxy S4 mini, which could be a competitor for the rumored low-cost iPhone and less expensive previous generation iPhones (although Samsung didn’t announce pricing) when it lands somewhere in the $400 price range in July.

Other devices announced by Samsung today include a brand new Galaxy NX camera with a 4.8-inch touch screen and Android 4.2.2., as well as Samsung’s new Galaxy S4 Zoom smartphone/camera hybrid device.

The company also showed its new ATIV Q Windows 8 hybrid device with the ability to dual-boot Windows and Android.

Head below for coverage and hands-on videos from the event from our sister site 9to5Google:

Samsung officially unveils Galaxy S4 Active, S4 mini, and S4 Zoom at London event

Samsung announces Galaxy NX Android camera with LTE, 20.3mp sensor, and 13 lenses

Hands-on with the Samsung S4 Zoom [Video]

Hands-on with the Samsung Galaxy NX [Video] 

Hands-on demo of the Samsung S4 Active underwater [Video]

Pegatron exec puts kibosh on $99 iPhone rumors

Remember that report from Reuters claiming Apple is building a low-cost iPhone that will sell for mere $100? This morning a report from ChinaTimes claims Pegatron chairman Tong Zixian dismissed the rumors by claiming the word “cheap” shouldn’t be associated with the product and that the “price is still high.” We have a feeling some of the company’s comments might have been lost in translation, but it’s only stating the obvious: Apple’s doesn’t make cheap products and $99 without some sort of subsidy is probably out of the question for the company’s much rumored “low-cost iPhone”.

According to the analysts, Apple’s low-cost iPhone will likely debut for somewhere in the neighbourhood of $300.

low-cost Stories April 3, 2013

Concept imagines low-cost iPhone with translucent iMac G3-inspired plastic in multiple colors

BusinessInsider points us to this concept from Matteo Gianni and friends that imagines a low-cost iPhone inspired by the original translucent, brightly colored casings Apple introduced with its iMac G3. While the G3-inspired back casing comes from only one sketchy DigiTimes report, the concept also appears to include a curved backside and other elements that line up with more concrete reports.

low-cost Stories March 18, 2013

New concepts imagine the low-cost iPhone in 4 and 4.5-inch variants, multiple colors

iPhoneclub.nl has partnered with concept artist Martin Hajek on this latest round of mock-ups that imagines the much-rumored, low-cost iPhone based on some of the recent rumors floating around. More realistic is the red version, as it includes a 4-inch display, polycarbonate backside, and some of the other rumored changes such as the positioning of ports and openings. We also get a larger 4.5-inch version in blue, which is something most analysts don’t expect to see on an iPhone until at least 2014.

low-cost Stories February 11, 2013

Analyst says $300 price point is sweet spot for unsubsidized iPhone mini

Topeka Capital analyst Brian White issued a report to clients today (via Forbes) to provide what he thinks Apple has in store for the much-rumored low-cost iPhone. According to White, Apple will introduce the lower-priced iPhone as early as June. This is of course something we heard before from previous reports, but White also predicted pricing and a possible name for the device…

Some new information that White added: He said the device will be called the “iPhone mini” or “iPhone Air” and sell for an unsubsidized price of $250 to $300.

“A $250-$300 price range would also be competitive with China-based Xiaomi that offers a high-end phone experience at a mid-range price of ~$320 in China,” he writes. “We believe a $250-to-$300 price point will allow Apple to significantly expand its reach in the smartphone market and better address developing markets such as China, while opening up more opportunities in Brazil, Russia, India and elsewhere.”

low-cost Stories January 25, 2013

iPad5-mockup-render-03new report from Jeremy Horwitz of iLounge provided us with what he claimed is a few details on the upcoming fifth-generation iPad based on hands-on time with a “supposedly accurate” physical model. He also claimed to have details on upcoming iPhone releases.

Horwitz noted he has inspected what he believed are casings for the iPad 5, and he described a completely redesigned device with “virtually no left or right bezels, and only enough space above and below the screen to accommodate the mandatory camera and Home Button elements.” As previously rumored, Horwitz claimed the fifth-gen iPad as iPad mini-like in its physical design with similar “chamfered edges and curves” along with the slimmed down bezel.

He also speculated that Apple could go with an IGZO display to achieve what he said is a much thinner design compared to previous generations:

Beyond that, it’s noticeably thinner, as well, which is to say the the fifth-generation iPad will be smaller in every dimension than its predecessors. As it will have the same chamfered edges and curves, calling it a “stretched iPad mini” is very close to entirely accurate… The changes are so considerable that a new screen technology, such as IGZO, seems like a given. Going Retina for the third-generation iPad forced Apple to make that tablet a little thicker than the iPad 2, in part to seriously beef up the battery.

The report also said that Apple is now targeting an October release for the iPad 5, “give or take a couple of weeks,” after originally planning for a March launch.

Horwitz, who has been accurate with details of unreleased Apple products in the past, also claimed to have new details on the upcoming iPhone releases:

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low-cost Stories January 22, 2013

Digitimes refutes its own larger iPhone rumor, now agrees with WSJ/Bloomberg

Digitimes reported today that Apple is working to release two new iPhones in 2013 with 4-inch displays, going against its earlier report that claimed Apple would release a new low-cost, 5-inch iPhone with a new design. Earlier this month, The Wall Street Journal also reported Apple is working on a less-expensive iPhone to début sometime in 2013. Today, Digitimes continued to claim Apple has an iPhone with a larger display in development, but it said the smartphone would not launch this year:

Previously it was [WE] said that Apple would release a lower-cost version of its iPhone with a bigger screen in 2013. But the sources claimed that Apple is indeed developing an iPhone with a bigger screen, but that will not be among the models to be lancuhed this year.

That’s Digitimes-speak for “oops, that cheaper/bigger device was an HTC phone, not the iPhone” or “please just forget what we said there.”

Rumors of two 4-inch iPhones launching in 2013—a new 5S and a new low-cost iPhone— is something we’ve heard before, but a second conflicting report from Digitimes claimed Apple would release a low-cost iPhone with a larger, 5-inch display and an all-new design. Other sketchy reports of Apple possibly releasing an iPhone with a 4.8-inch display surfaced this week but didn’t exactly add up. Now it seems Digitimes is agreeing with the Wall Street Journal that two 4-inch devices will launch in 2013 with one being a new low-cost model. The report also said one of the devices will target the “midrange” market:

One of the two versions to be introduced this year will target the midrange market segment, but both will adopt in-cell touch technology…However, the sources noted it is still yet to be determined if Apple will have adequate supply of in-cell touch panels in 2013 for a lower-cost version of the iPhone due to mass production issues from the technology in 2012. The iPhone 5 took a hit in sales during 2012 as a result of poor yields for in-cell technology, but the sources are now saying those yields are improving.

That “midrange” phone is probably the current iPhone 5.

low-cost Stories January 15, 2013

apple-iphone-5-volume

Following reports from WSJ that Apple is cutting component orders for iPhone 5 due to “weaker-than-expected-demand,” Jeffries analyst Peter Misek is out today with a note to clients claiming initial production of the iPhone 5S will begin in March for a June/July launch (via StreetInsider):

 “As word of the earlier production schedule starts to spread, we believe we could see a slight slowing of demand CQ1 in anticipation of the new product launch and Apple will likely start curtailing channel inventory. Therefore we tweak down our CQ1 iPhone shipment estimate from 48M to 44M, which is still well above widespread fears of shipments in the mid-30Ms.”

Back in December Misek also claimed the 5S is coming in June and at the time said he expects Apple to ship the device with multiple colors, improved battery life, and possibly a 4.8″ Retina/IGZO display. However, in today’s note Misek said there has been no additional evidence for the 4.8″ prototype signaling the design could be for the iPhone 6.  Today he also added his thoughts on rumors of a low-cost iPhone, claiming Apple could release a low-cost device made of polycarbonate with no LTE and a 4″ non-retina display.

As for the rumors of less than expected iPhone 5 demand contributing to cuts on component orders, which is also impacting the company’s stock price this week, Misek provided his thoughts: expand full story

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