Apple might have heavily marketed its iPhone 5s and iPhone 5c in China, but rather than picking up one of the newer models, subscribers in the world’s largest smartphone market are instead continuing to purchase Cupertino’s older iOS devices.
The news comes in a Mixpanel study that reached us from AppleInsider. Data shared by the research firm indicates how Apple’s iPhone 5s is one of the least-used iOS devices in China (see above), while the iPhone 5, iPhone 4s, and even older models are continuing to prove popular in the nation.
In a recent article, the publication explains:
Specifically, when Apple released the latest iPhone lineup in September there was a definite uptick in Chinese iOS data, though the jump was attributed to the iPhone 5, not the 5s or 5c. Similarly, China Mobile’s iPhone launch in January drove growth, but again consumers went mostly for older models.
Though this might sound curious, Mixpanel found that the reason for the situation is simply a matter of cost: new products are expensive in China, and when they launch Apple’s older iOS devices get a price reduction.
The high cost of new iPhones in China was brought to our attention last year when a report demonstrated how the iPhone 5c, Apple’s less expensive handset, costs more in China than the average monthly wage.
As such, the handset is continuing to sell poorly in the region, with customers either choosing to spend a little extra on the iPhone 5s or save a lot through purchasing an older model.
Beyond the above data, Mixpanel also found that iOS adoption in China is unsurprisingly concentrated around the nation’s affluent eastern coast cities.
Despite all of this, however, Apple’s share of China’s big smartphone market is growing. It just seems the iOS device market itself is presently dominated by older, less expensive models.
Could a long-requested “phablet” iPhone 6 change this? We’ll keep you updated with further information as we receive it.
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