Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) is aggressively going after Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd. (LON:BC94) (KRX:005930), accusing the Korean company of copying its technology. But a big fallout of its endless legal battle with Samsung is that the tech giant had to reveal a lot of otherwise confidential documents and emails. One of the documents “FY’14 Planning Offsite” gives the strongest indication that Apple is going to launch a bigger iPhone.
Apple says, “customers want what we don’t have”
The documents released in court included slides from a meeting in April 2013 about the company’s plans for 2014. The slides show that, between 2011 and 2012, the overall smartphone market surged by a whopping 228 million units. Of that, 159 million units growth came from devices in the sub-$300 segment, and 91 million units growth was seen in smartphones with bigger than 4-inch screen and over-$300 price tag. Sales of smartphones with 4-inch or less screen size and over-$300 price tag actually declined by 22 million units between those years. That’s the segment Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL)’s iPhones fall in. They have a 4-inch screen size and cost far above $300.
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On a slide titled “Consumers Want What We Don’t Have’, Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL)’s emphasizes that it is aware of the consumer trends. And the trend clearly suggests that consumers are looking for what Apple doesn’t have. That’s why the growth in iPhone sales has slowed quarter after quarter. The company’s own documents make it clear that it has to make either of the two choices to remain competitive in the smartphone market. Apple will either have to launch a sub-$300 smartphone or an iPhone with bigger screen size while maintaining its high-end price tag.
Apple unlikely to enter the sub-$300 segment
Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) is unlikely to foray into the low-cost smartphone market. Instead, it could focus its resources on building a bigger iPhone. If rumors are to be believed, the tech giant is already working on two larger versions of the iPhone, one with a 4.7-inch screen and another with 5.5-inches. The latest internal documents lend credibility to rumors around larger iPhones.
Besides a bigger screen, Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL)’s upcoming iPhone 6 is rumored to have a scratch-proof sapphire display, a slimmer design with 7.1 mm thickness, an upgraded chipset, faster WiFi capabilities, improved battery life, 10MP camera with Optical Image Stabilization technology, and solar charging.
Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) shares were down 0.58% to $528.75 in pre-market trading Monday.