When you think of Apple products you probably have an image of a never ending line of updates. Once they released the first iPhone the company seemed to be on a mission to upgrade as often as possible with the latest new technology. But however popular each released incarnation proves itself to be, that isn’t what drives sales. The real money maker? The iPhone 4.
Still at the top of its sales game, many experts are referring to the fourth generation iPhone as Apple’s “secret weapon”. Even as rumors of the iPhone 6 abound, people are still purchasing the iPhone 4 all over the world, three years after its release.
India is the primary consumer base for the device, but reports have shown it is still a hit with first time smartphone buyers the world over. The company has responded by exploiting that fact.
“We want to attract as many of these buyers as we can,” CEO Tim Cook said in a conference call earlier this week, speaking with market analysts about the projections for the coming quarter.
That is a goal they seemed to have achieved. Analysts had projected a sales figure of 26.5 million sold last quarter. But Apple had much more impressive figures, with 31.2 million bought up globally during that period, a 20% increase from last year’s figures.
So what’s the deal? The hype over the iPhone 5 was overwhelming during its release, and we are well on our way to number 6. How is it that Apple is managing to keep people coming back for the iPhone 4? Especially when the fan base for the company tend to be upgrade seekers always up for the next wave?
Part of it was an initiative used in India that allowed a trade in and cash back program to be held in its stores. Aimed at students, it would allow them to get the equivalent of $144 USD on their trade-ins at the time of purchase, or $130 USD for non-students. Making it more affordable than other high-tech device options in the country.
Elsewhere, the iPhone 4 and 4S has been pushed hard in stores. That includes discounts for contracts from service providers.
Add all of that to the tailor-made marketing campaigns being held from country to country, taking advantage of local issues, needs and demand, and you have a potent formula that seems to be doing the company well.
But it begs the question: what happens after the iPhone 6 release? Will they be pushing the iPhone 4 and 4S, or moving on to pushing the iPhone 5?
Source: Wall Street Journal