back to article Apple RESURRECTS the iPhone 4: report

Apple has “revived” the production of iPhone 4 handsets in India, Indonesia and Brazil in a bid to claw back lost ground on Samsung and grab an extra slice of the mid-market in these fast growing regions. Three senior execs “with direct knowledge of the company’s plan” told India’s Economic Times that Apple’s management on the …

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iPhone 4

Wasn't that the one that you had to hold in a certain way?

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Re: iPhone 4

Yes but apparently they fixed that design (internally, not just with an elastic band wrapped around it) and never bothered to tell anyone.

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New refurbished?

ssshhh, don;t tell anyone.

Apple is selling cheap phones.

Why not, they likely only cost $35 to make.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: New refurbished?

Many things cost very little to make, a CD is pennies and yet it is £8 or so to buy?

I wonder why that is? could it be that the cost of recording, production, marketing, packaging and promotion actually costs money?

What tends to happen is a product costs more initially since they are trying to recoup the R&D, design, software engineering costs.

But what can also be true is that the older parts can be less efficient and better parts become available. So often it works out cheaper to redesign the product as a low end model than to just reuse an old design.

If Sony was going to re-release the PS2 they would create a cheaper simpler version, they wouldn't just re-issue the original device.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: New refurbished?

Sony and Microsoft did release new console models within the same generation. Achieved with improved production techniques and smaller die sizes. These improved designs used less power, produced less noise, they were also slimmer models and importantly for less money.

Presumably the iphone 4 will be cheaper to make due to the book price of the ARM Cortex-A8, flash memory and other main chips being reduced in price.

The difference with Apple is they have the biggest margins in the industry. Producing a cheap phone can simply mean reducing their profit margin equal to their competitors.

47% on their high capacity iPad is profit. Their low end ipad in mid 2012 cost $300 to make they sold it for $499.

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Re: New refurbished?

Correction dear commentard.

47% of their highest end Ipad is not bill of materials related. Unless you have Apple internal docs you want to share with us?

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Re: New refurbished?

A) I can't be bothered looking it up, but you could work out Apple's profit margin by taking the profits (documented in their quarterly reports) and dividing it by the number of units sold (documented in their quarterly reports). They're not a private company. It's not an internal doc.

B) The figure that I heard at a Deloitte event was 60% profit margin on a 128GB iPad Air.

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Not one thing or another

It was obvious to most of us that the iPhone 5c was neither fish nor fowl. Neither cheap enough to make a dent in the lower cost android/win phone market and did not have the cachet for the high end users.

However I am not sure how selling 3 year old technology against phones like the Moto G is going to compete in developing markets.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Not one thing or another

Because people want iPhones and many would still prefer a 3 year old iPhone 4 to a brand new Moto G - partly as the iPhone 4 is still a great phone - I know people still using 3GS handsets every day and have no problems doing so.

Newsflash - some people do not buy / drive brand new cars either.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Not one thing or another

3 year old iPhone technology is still pretty on a par with new Android handsets at the mid-level.

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Re: Not one thing or another

But the status symbol is less shiny if it's old and/or second hand.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Not one thing or another

It's not second hand - these are NEW - just an older model which as it looks basically identical to the 4S that is still being sold most people would not care about.

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Van

Re: Not one thing or another

iphone 4

800 MHz ARM Cortex-A8

PowerVR SGX535 GPU (200 MHz)

512 MB LPDDR2 DRAM (200 MHz)

1420 mA·h

_____________________________________

Motorola X

1.7 GHz dual-core Qualcomm Snapdragon S4 Pro

Quad-core Adreno 320 @ 400 MHz

2 GB of RAM

2200 mAh

Let's face it Apple could have made cheap phones just by reducing profit it makes on each unit.

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Re: Not one thing or another

Correction the iPhone 4 was a great phone, 3 years ago. Both the technology and cost base has moved on. What people are buying into is the Apple distortion field that somehow the iPhone has some sort of magic that other brands do not contain. If that's what they want to believe great, but it does not hide the fact that you buy an up to date android phone for far less cost .

Correct, not all people drive new cars, but this is like Ford bring out a new car, and then at the same time selling it's older, less efficient, less capable models at the same time as the value range. This used to be common practice in the 3rd world, but even there they are not interested in being fobbed off with obsolete technology

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Re: Not one thing or another

Renault/Dacia?

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Go

Re: Not one thing or another

You mean like Peugeot continuing to produce and sell the 206 long after it had been rendered "obsolete" by the newer, shinier 207?

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seems an odd thing to do

Seems an odd thing to do considering how poorly the iPhone 4 performs with iOS 7. I had one, I know. iOS 7 seriously downgraded the iPhone 4 experience. The 4s is perfectly fine on iOS 7. That might make sense but to keep selling a phone that is, frankly, piss-poor at running the current os makes little sense to me.

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Re: seems an odd thing to do

Could put a software switch in that limits these runs to iOS6 but then that would lessen their desirability as I am assuming there would be problems running the latest apps.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: seems an odd thing to do

iOS 7 fine on my 4 - first version was slower but later ones were about the same as iOS 6.

The difference is at least the 4 can run iOS 7 - most Android phones cannot run the latest version of Android and would probably run like a dog if they even could?

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404
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Re: seems an odd thing to do

You might be wrong too. Shouldn't really make assumptions like that either.

More a matter of manufacturers releasing upgraded software for their phones instead of pumping out new models. For instance I have an Acer Iconia A500 that's been through Gingerbread->Ice Cream Sandwich, Jelly Bean, and now KitKat. Each upgrade has made the tab smoother and a little quicker each time. The same holds for my Motorola Razr, going from ICS to JellyBean was like getting a new phone. It will never see another upgrade, not because of Motorola or Android, but because of Verizon. Can't sell new phones if the older ones as just as good with the same software.

I'm a Windows guy mostly, I know what marketing departments do. I know Windows 7 will happily run on any old XP boxen that has a dual core cpu and 2GB of ram, but that's not what they would have you believe.

I'm in the middle of an epiphany that KitKat is a happy camper on your average 1st generation Kindle Fire, once rooted, and flies like the wind for some 'old throwaway tech'. Great hardware. Becomes a fine fully-functional android tablet with proper software. (odd how wanting to play 'Clash of Clans' leads you into some different tangent).

Where was I? Not sure other than perception can be managed and marketing has been using psychology on us poor masses for a long time now. Must test for yourself before making assumptions like 'probably run like a dog' because that's only what *they* would have you believe lol.

Cheers!

;)

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Re: seems an odd thing to do

IOS 7 on my Iphone continues to run like a dog regardless of updates. Just ordered a Nexus 5 as a result. Seriously considering reloading v6 before I Ebay it. Ironically any App including the Ebay one - that lets say is less than effecient on how it uses data - starts like an arthritic snail. Evem day to day apps like contacts and calendar are appreciably more laggy than on IOS 6.

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Re: seems an odd thing to do

@404,

Exactly, I have helped a friend root their Kindle Fire and loaded ICS, it worked great! It's the manufacturers and carriers that limit the devices from upgrading. I wish Google would require the device/carriers to allow the user to move to stock Android, sure have it invalidate the warranty if they want.

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Re: seems an odd thing to do

But would that not be fragmentation? Because apparently, no developers will develop software for fragmented OSs.

Bad enough they now have a landfill phone, but a fragmented landfill phone.. Oh my..

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Re: seems an odd thing to do

"most Android phones cannot run the latest version of Android"

You have something to back that up, I assume?

My first Android device was a Dell Streak 5 (ok, I know). It came with Android 1.5(Cupcake) and upgraded in its time as far as Gingerbread (2.3.7) with no issues whatsoever. My current phone came with ICS and is currently running on KitKat, again with no visible slowing.

Please don't just repeat allegations without some grain of investigation first. Leave that sort of thing to the Met.

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iPhone 4, 3 years later: FUBAR

My wife has a 3-year old iPhone 4: the front screen was broken, replaced and broken again. The back glass is shattered. The touch screen works on sunny days only and then stops responding to touches on a whim. The on/off button is broken.

Bottom line: a badly designed product with serious reliability flaws. Sad for Apple, I thought they were making premium products.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: iPhone 4, 3 years later: FUBAR

Sounds like you just broke the phone just as you would have broken almost any other phone in the same situations. Screens do not just 'break' unless dropped / crushed. Most likely most other phones would have broken in the same way...

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Anonymous Coward

Re: iPhone 4, 3 years later: FUBAR

Reading that diatribe, i'd suggest that your wife is careless.

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Re: iPhone 4, 3 years later: FUBAR

Quite. I dislike Apple intensely, but even I can't see how you can justify blaming Apple for what sounds clearly like accident damage.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: iPhone 4, 3 years later: FUBAR

Guess is she smashed up her car then it's the car's fault - of course.

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Re: iPhone 4, 3 years later: FUBAR

Think the wife needs to be more careful with her phone, dropping it and smashing the glass is hardly Apple's fault.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: iPhone 4, 3 years later: FUBAR

Once again epic fails trying to compare cars to phones.

If Apple made cars they would have a 45% profit on them for starters.

When you're paying over the odds compared to an equivalent product, you should expect some kind of extra protection for your money. It would be fair to expect the Apple of cars to be safer in crash tests, be able to cope with rougher terrain, but in the past, the Appple of cars tended to be more fragile and less safe for your money.

Guess what folks, you only paid for style and clever marketing (perhaps smaller form factor in the also fragile MacBook Air's case) not a premium product.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: iPhone 4, 3 years later: FUBAR

Nobody I know who a cracked screen on their 1st gen iphones blamed Apple, but they all paid over the odds for the product.

If this was just a clumsy wife problem, then screen repairability and improved glass wouldn't have become an important part of the industry. People want more durable phones. Apple clearly cared more about their style and profits than a durable product. For those comparing to cars, durability testing is in a different league, they are incomparable.

To be fair to Apple stores, they are apparently excellent at replacing reasonable damage or devices for free. I've known car main dealers to operate like crooks.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: iPhone 4, 3 years later: FUBAR

Sounds like she needs a laptop more like a Toughbook. I've used a Macbook Air for years - it goes in a slip case before I put it in my backpack and carry it around - but I would have done that with a Windows laptop as well. The Macbook Air is certainly not 'fragile'.

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Van

Re: iPhone 4, 3 years later: FUBAR

MacBook Airs self destruct with the tiniest of fluid being spilt around the I/O ports or on the keys. Check auction sites for the left over spare parts. It's always the system board and battery that self destruct and are not economically viable to repair. A minor keyboard spill on a premium laptop of the old days, simply meant a new keyboard. The sad thing about the Macbook air' is that it has a lovely o-ring seal engineered into it's bottom half as if designed to float on water. Style over function yet again.

My first Netbook, a Dell mini 9 has been abused by kids and is still going strong. It cost £195. The Macbook air is nearer £900. Sure accidental damage is not Apple's fault, but claims of build quality and robustness at a high price point should include some safe guards.

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Re: iPhone 4, 3 years later: FUBAR

So your wife breaks the device, and that's Apple's fault?

There's no doubt it's a fragile device, but it doesn't break itself.

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Re: iPhone 4, 3 years later: FUBAR

You drop a phone that isn't in a protective case, it's going to break. That includes the iPhone 4. Best way to protect it is with a case. The screen and back didn't break by themselves or due to a "design flaw". The phone was obviously dropped. Only the user can take the blame for that.

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Re: iPhone 4, 3 years later: FUBAR

My son had his 4s shattered screen (he dropped it - don't blame Apple) replaced for £35.

I had the home button on my 4 replaced along with the battery (new battery is excellent) for £25 together.

All in backstreet fixit shops and while-u-wait.

Our phones run 40 apps fast.

Wonder how many Android landfill phone owners can expect similar repairability and decent performance on older kit?

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DJO
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Re: iPhone 4, 3 years later: FUBAR

"You drop a phone that isn't in a protective case, it's going to break."

I dropped a cheaper than chips Nokia CrappyPhone™ 3 stories onto gravel on concrete and once I found the rear cover apart from some slight scratching on the plastic it was otherwise undamaged.

If Nokia can make a robust phone for under £20, it seems odd that Apple cannot for over 10 times the cost.

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Re: iPhone 4, 3 years later: FUBAR

I've dropped my Galaxy S3 on to tarmac, pavement and concrete several times. Yes, I'm clumsy. The only damage is some scratches and a slight dent in the case. The screen is still perfect and it runs the latest version of Android no problem. Who needs repairs?

I know lots of people who dropped iPhones and the screen and / or back shattered. One person I know managed to bend an iPhone 4S so it looks like a banana! (I have no idea what she did with it.)

You can't compare iPhone with landfill Android. Sure you're talking about an old iPhone but it was a premium model at the time so compare like with like.

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Re: iPhone 4, 3 years later: FUBAR

Not all unprotected phones break when you drop them; my Lumia 920 has fallen may a time, I bike, hike and trek and m not going to molly-coddle a device all the time just because the manufacturer wants it to look good at the cost of functionality.

So, a milled, monocoque, plastic case with highly curved Gorilla glass means I just grab the phone from the pocket and press the camera button to get a picture - and the reception is better.

There is an interesting video showing a 920 being used to hammer a nail into wood using the centre of the screen.

Not all phones are created equal - my mates' otherwise functional iPhone became US simply because the button failed because it used so, so often; less than 3 years old and certainly not a careless or freakish user.

Casual observance of many a teen with broken-glass iPhones suggests it is not uncommon; obviously they are expensive and so less likely to be replaced even when broken but functional.

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Re: iPhone 4, 3 years later: FUBAR

> I've dropped my Galaxy S3 on to tarmac, pavement and concrete several times

And yet a guy I know had to replace his S3 glass (£12 DIY) after it broke falling of his sofa onto his carpet, perhaps he was unlucky and you/are were lucky?

Still failed after a wash cycle, few phones manage that trick reliably. Another S4 sold!

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Re: iPhone 4, 3 years later: FUBAR

Really? My Blackberry Z10 has been dropped several times, and only now after many drops has it got any damage. Smashed screen? No. A hairline fracture on the main board that means when it's moved slightly it reboots. After 1 year, hundreds of hours of use and being dropped on concrete many many times.

an iPhone typically breaks on drop 1 because the design is just fragile to start with. Looks over durability. Helps sell new iPhones see...

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Re: iPhone 4, 3 years later: FUBAR

On/Off button breaking happened to a friend too.

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Re: iPhone 4, 3 years later: FUBAR

Dropped my old Dell Streak many times more than once. It ended up with a single crack in the corner of the screen that was visible if you looked at it edge on because it broke up the screen image.

I've also dropped my current Note more than once - no indication of damage issues as yet. Oh, and neither one had a case because in the case (ha!) of the Dell, there weren't any, not in Oz anyway, and in the case of the Note, it turned a slim, neat looking mobile into a leather half brick that wouldn't fit in my pocket.

It did NOT end up with a shatter pattern that looked like a bullethole in laminated glass after being dropped, once, onto carpet as a frlend's iPhone 4s did.

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Anonymous Coward

If it's using iOS 7 then I still expect more people to flock to other phones.

What a frickin ugly OS

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Happy

Never mind that!

Can I wipe it and install a proper Linux on it?

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Anonymous Coward

Apple could end up in a odd situation where globally they are selling more of their 3 year old handsets than their latest ones. Also, are the 4s subject to any ongoing legal wrangling? It doesn't affect markets where its a obsolete product but could scupper their plans here. A bit like if Samsung wanted to start selling the original Galaxy.

Watching from a neutral position with the popcorn.

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Selling an old version of the iPhone in emerging markets has always been Apple's "low cost" solution. Trouble is, consumers can find Android and Windows phones with bigger displays, more memory, faster CPU's, and bigger batteries that perform better than the iPhone 4, hence why Apple's market share outside the USA is relatively small compared to Android. Consumers want more for less, not 4 year old technology for less that was behind the curve when it was introduced four years ago and even more behind the curve now. Sure, people want the fashion statement that is the iPhone, but apparently, they don't want it nearly as much as they want Androids, outside the USA.

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Geolocking imminent?

Will Apple take a leaf out of Samsungs's book and geolock it's hardware to certain regions if there's the possibility of a £150 iPhone 4?

Or did Samsung patent that idea?

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