Apple announced the new iPhone 14 series on September 9, five days before last year’s iPhone 13 announcement. Apple Stores and carriers nationwide opened their doors at 8 a.m. on September 16 for the official launch of the iPhone 14, iPhone 14 Pro and Pro Max. Here are seven key takeaways from the launch:
- Products have been significantly improved over last year’s launch which was affected by the shortage of equipment
- At the time of opening, most Apple stores still have stock for those looking to buy iPhones as walk-ins, although supplies are now dwindling and some Pro Max models are on order at retailers. This is very different compared to last year where customers were often sent devices at launch due to shortages.
Sources: Apple.com, downloadable websites
- The iPhone 14 Pro Max and iPhone 14 Pro are leading early sales
- Early adopters and developers continue to choose Pro models instead of the base iPhone 14. This is normal for the first months of the new iPhone launch. Many are upgrading from older devices such as the iPhone X series. Few are upgrading from the iPhone 13 Pro series. The new deep blue color is the future for color selection.
- iPhone 14 – early developers are skeptical
- Apple stores and carriers will have a hard time convincing iPhone owners to buy the iPhone 14 as it’s nearly identical to the $100 cheaper iPhone 13. Some of the improvements are more important on the A15 bionic chip, 1.6% larger battery, F1.5 wide aperture 12MP rear camera, with hazard detection and Emergency SOS via satellite (not yet unlocked).
- Smart customers will know these differences and either switch off or go for the iPhone 13 instead. Agents may advise iPhone 13 users not to upgrade, especially in cases where the device still needs to be paid for or there is no real benefit to upgrade.
- Carrier order deals are similar to last year, but Verizon isn’t the next one anymore
- Verizon, AT&T and T-Mobile have similar pre-order deals compared to last year, offering up to $800 off for base models and up to $1,000 off for Pro series devices with trade-ins -ins and unlimited plans. Verizon’s iPhone 14 Pro promotion is offering another $200 e-gift card for those who switch. This is worse compared to last year when an additional $500 was offered through prepaid Mastercard.
- Apple’s retail sales are not as strong as last year
- The highest trade value for Apple phones this year is $720 on the iPhone 13 Pro Max and $600 on the iPhone 13 Pro. Last year’s offerings were $790 for the iPhone 12 Pro Max and $640 for the iPhone 12 Pro. Low business value makes Apple’s growth weak year-over-year.
- eSIM is a mixed bag
- Having eSIM-only iPhones has been a major concern for reviewers and the media as it makes switching from multiple SIM cards more difficult, especially when traveling in some countries where eSIM is not widely available.
- People looking to buy an American iPhone and send it to someone overseas are more likely to do so with the iPhone 14.
- eSIM services are easily available at retail stores, according to representatives. However, there are complaints coming from people trying to transfer their eSIM on their own, as this is a new process that is unknown to many people. In addition, iOS 16 introduced a bug that affected new device activations, which required a firmware update to iOS 16.0.1 to fix the problem.
- Store traffic is handled through Apple’s appointment system
- Apple has followed a system for several years now where people need to make an appointment to buy a device. The long lines we are seeing now are for those seeking to make an appointment to purchase a device. The iPhone’s previous launch value is dominant in today’s environment.
The iPhone 14 lineup is off to a strong start, especially for the iPhone 14 Pro and Pro Max. It remains to be seen how the iPhone 14 stacks up compared to the similar and more affordable iPhone 13. However, the success of the iPhone will continue despite the current economic climate due to the products Apple is more protected from inflation. and consumers continue to see strong growth to help sell devices.