iPhone upgrade cycle continues to slow, report says

Several reports in the past have linked the increasing prices of smartphones to lengthening iPhone upgrade cycles. A new report today from Strategy Analytics makes similar claims, saying that the average time to upgrade a smartphone has lengthened to 33 months.











The Strategy Analytics report also says that the average iPhone has been active for 18 months, compared to the average Samsung phone at 16.5 months.

According to the latest research from Strategy Analytics, the average Apple smartphone has been active for 18 months and 16.5 months for Samsung. 1 in 5 Caucasians plan to keep their phones for 3 years or more while Baby Boomers increasingly are delaying their smartphone purchase for 3 years+.

Elsewhere, the report highlights that just 7 percent of those surveyed indicated that they plan to spend over $1,000 when they upgrade to their next iPhone or other smartphone. David Kerr, a Strategy Analytics VP, said that customer perception of an innovation slowdown is playing a role in the changing smartphone industry:

“Operators and device brands face significant inertia given consumer perception of diminishing innovation,” Kerr said. “Vendor pursuit of profitability has seen smartphone prices rising towards and above $1,000.

Finally, Strategy Analytics notes that the biggest barrier to 5G will be price. One out of four people surveyed acknowledged, however, that 5G will be an important factor when they go to pick their next smartphone. Strategy Analytics also expects prices of smartphones to rise in conjunction with 5G.

Other highlights from the Strategy Analytics report:

  • Apple and Samsung are dominant with brand loyalty above 70% with a huge separation to second tier vendors LG and Motorola with repeat purchase intentions below 50%
  • Apple Dominates Hispanic and Asian Markets with market share above 50%
  • Samsung leads in market share among Gen X but trails Apple by almost 40 points among Gen Z in terms of purchase intent.
  • Camera Features, Quality are significantly more important to women and Gen Z users.
  • A growing demand for better tools to Manage Time and Unplug from always on is seen especially in Gen Y and Gen Z.

The lengthening upgrade cycle is something Apple itself has acknowledged, and is part of the driving force behind its push into Services. Apple is expected to announce the iPhone 11 and iPhone 11 Pro next month.

Jamf

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