The iPhone 7 will mostly resemble the iPhone 6s/6 in terms of design, various sources have confirmed, extending Apple’s usual design upgrade cycle to three years, as noted by Nikkei earlier in May. How will this affect Apple’s earnings? Quartz tried to find some answers, and they aren’t too positive – at least a few months before the official launch.
As Quartz points out, under the current upgrade cycle an average customer buys three new iPhones in six years. If Apple makes the switch to three years, as reported by Nikkei’s sources, citing the lack of smartphone functions the company could add in such a short period of time, it would mean the average customer would only buy two iPhones during the same six-year period. That could negatively affect Apple’s earnings.
Quartz has surveyed 525 iPhone owners and found that many of them likely won’t upgrade if Apple doesn’t release a redesigned iPhone. And, according to the rumour mill, it won’t. The reason: they mostly upgrade on each new iPhone redesign.
When asked whether they would upgrade this year if the iPhone 7 were not redesigned, only 9.3% said they are extremely likely or very likely to upgrade.
Quartz’s result is a bit lower than an earlier Piper Jaffray survey of US iPhone users, which found that roughly 15% would upgrade. Commenting on the survey results back then, Gene Munster of Piper Jaffray said that the iPhone 7 will be off to a great start this fall.