Apple’s yearly product event was held on 9/12/17 at the new Steve Jobs Theater in California. As expected, Apple announced a new Apple TV, Apple Watch Series 3, and new iPhones. The newsworthy iPhone reveal was the new iPhone X starting at $999 and available for pre-order at the end of October. People can’t believe that a phone would cost at least $999. Let’s examine if this price is extreme or worth the significant expense.
Is the Apple iPhone X Worth $999?
Since there is expected to be limited inventory due to complicated assembly and new tooling, all indications are that the new iPhone X inventory will be extremely constrained. If you don’t purchase one right away during the pre-order period you will probably not receive one until several months later. According to the Economic theory of Supply and Demand, since there will be low inventory and people are excited for the new phone, then the price will be high. Apple has also released the new iPhone 8 and iPhone 8 Plus starting at $699 and $799 respectively. These models will fill the availability and price gaps for people who want brand new phones now but do not want to pay for the top of the line features.
iPhone X Features
Here are the notable features of the new iPhone X compared to the iPhone 8 Plus:
- Super Retina HD display
- 5.8-inch (diagonal) all-screen OLED Multi‑Touch display2
- HDR display
- 2436-by-1125-pixel resolution at 458 ppi
- 1,000,000:1 contrast ratio (typical)
- Dual optical image stabilization
- TrueDepth camera
- Front Camera Portrait mode
- Front Camera Portrait Lighting (beta)
- Face ID
- Enabled by TrueDepth camera for facial recognition
- Pay with your iPhone using Face ID in stores, within apps, and on the web
- High Dynamic Range with Dolby Vision and HDR10 content
- Lasts up to 2 hours longer than iPhone 7
- Wireless charging (works with Qi chargers3)
These new features are mostly all related to the larger screen, better cameras, and wireless charging. If you do not need any of these features, then you should go for the iPhone 8 or iPhone 8 Plus. What if you don’t even want an 8 or 8 Plus? I researched this topic and found that you should wait until about a month and purchase a new iPhone 7 on sale. Apple lowered the starting price to $549 today. In a month you may be able to get $50-100 off through sales at big box electronics stores. There will also be further sales on Black Friday which is just around the corner.
In order to get the best bang for the buck, a smartphone should be kept for around 3-4 years. Less than 3 years and you are upgrading too often, while longer than 4 years and you are sacrificing security and performance. However, an argument can be made that since many people rely on their smartphones and use them everyday, even $1,000 isn’t that much money. If you keep your new iPhone X for one year and then resell it on eBay in excellent condition you may be able to get $800 back (due to Apple products high resale values). Therefore, the net price could end up being $200 for one year of owning the latest and greatest technology. If you care about having the best screen and features then you should get the iPhone X, otherwise the iPhone 8 and iPhone 7 are also excellent choices.
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