Apple’s Fall Product Launch
Just in Time for the Holidays: New iPhones
Apple (AAPL) is holding its fall product launch later today. The tech giant is expected to roll out new iPhones as well as updates to its AirPods and Apple Watches. Like last year, Apple is holding the event virtually due to the pandemic.
The iPhone maker’s fall event is always a big deal, garnering a huge amount of attention from consumers and the press. The timing of the event also tends to work in Apple’s favor as it sets the stage for the holiday shopping season. As it stands, Apple is seeing strong demand, particularly for its iPhones. In its second quarter, iPhone sales rose 50% year-over-year. Sales in its “other” category, which includes AirPods, were up 40% compared to last year.
All Eyes on iPhones
Consumers and investors will be carefully watching the iPhone launches. The category accounts for half of Apple’s sales. Last year Apple was forced to delay its iPhone 12 launch until October because of pandemic-related challenges. This year the company is back on track. Apple is expected to follow last year’s strategy in which it launched four iPhone 5G models priced between $599 and $1,099. The phones will not have any major overhauls, sporting the same screen sizes but with improved cameras.
Some are concerned that the lack of groundbreaking new products in this year’s launch will make it harder for Apple to maintain growth. However, the company argues that 5G is in its infancy and customers around the world will be eager to purchase 5G products.
Wireless Carriers Are Key to iPhone Growth
Wireless carriers which supply service for Apple hardware are currently battling for market share. They are offering perks to lure customers which could give Apple’s sales a boost. Verizon (VZ), AT&T (T), and T-Mobile (TMUS) are offering generous subsidies, covering a lot of the cost of new iPhones for customers as a way to encourage people to upgrade to their 5G services. The strategy is paying off for the carriers. AT&T said the offers have been profitable and it has no plans to curb these initiatives anytime soon. That bodes well for Apple as it rolls out a new slate of iPhones.
As Apple launches its products later today, it will be interesting to see how consumers, investors, and wireless carriers react.
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