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macrumors bot
Original poster
Apr 12, 2001
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21,117



While much has been made of Apple's strong iPhone sales this quarter with estimates now pushing toward 30 million units, what hasn't been known is the mix of iPhone models contributing to that number. The significant majority of sales are almost certainly from the current iPhone 4S, but the company continues to offer lower-end 8 GB iPhone 4 and iPhone 3GS models in some markets. Higher-capacity iPhone 4 models are also available in countries where the iPhone 4S has yet to launch.

Ahead of the iPhone 4S debut, the iPhone 3GS was continuing to sell well under the shadow of the iPhone 4 in the United States, suggesting that there is indeed a significant market for these lower-end devices.

iphone_3gs_4.jpg



A new report from Digitimes now puts some production numbers on these low-end models for the current quarter, claiming that Apple's manufacturing partners are pushing out two million units of the iPhone 3GS this quarter. In addition, Apple is said to be producing 800,000-1 million CDMA iPhone 4 units.
Apple has been increasing its penetration into entry-level smartphone markets and the OEM production of iPhone 3GS has continued steadily with the volume likely to reach two million units in the fourth quarter of 2011 and 1.4-1.6 million units in the first quarter of 2012, according to industry sources.

...

Meanwhile, the production of the CDMA version of iPhone 4 is expected to top 800,000 to one million units in the fourth quarter of 2011 and 500,000-600,000 units in the following quarter, estimated the sources.
Unaddressed is the GSM iPhone 4, which is undoubtedly being produced at an even higher rate given the worldwide market for the device. And despite Apple's rapid international rollout of the iPhone 4S, a number of countries are still yet to see the device and are thus still selling the GSM iPhone 4 as the most current model.

Article Link: iPhone 3GS Production Pegged at Two Million Units This Quarter, CDMA iPhone 4 at One Million
 

longofest

Editor emeritus
Jul 10, 2003
2,901
1,608
Falls Church, VA
Eric... that's an old image showing 3GS at $49 and iPhone 4 at $199... was that intentional? Delete me if it's not intentional and you fix it.
 

topmounter

macrumors 68020
Jun 18, 2009
2,460
726
FEMA Region VIII
I'm still amazed that with the 3GS being "free" w/ contract, the carriers are still trying to sell crappy feature phones for $29 or more w/ contract.
 

gnasher729

Suspended
Nov 25, 2005
17,980
5,562
Jeez, so much demand for a 2-year old phone. :eek:

Why would it matter to any rational person how old the phone is? What counts is what you pay, and what you get. And the 3GS is cheaper and not as good as the 4 which is cheaper and not as good as the 4s. Do you think Apple should have released a brand new iPhone 4s light with the same price and features as the 3GS, just so you don't moan about it being two years old?

I am actually quite surprised about this claim that Apple would sell only two million 3GS out of 30 million total.
 

Taz Mangus

macrumors 604
Mar 10, 2011
7,815
3,496
perfect first smartphone for the kids if you have an iphone. if they lose it or break it then it's not a big loss. and you get free texting

^^^ This ^^^ The best part, that two year old iPhone gets the latest iOS 5.

EDIT: Actually the 3GS is 2.5 years old.
 

Tiger8

macrumors 68020
May 23, 2011
2,479
649
perfect first smartphone for the kids if you have an iphone. if they lose it or break it then it's not a big loss. and you get free texting

Call me old fashioned, but kids should not have a phone, let alone a smartphone, until they are in their teens... maybe.

iPhone? no big loss? If you break it or lose it the 3Gs is $375 retail, the 4 is $550.

You are better off putting that money in a college fund for the kid.
 

neilw

macrumors 6502
Aug 4, 2003
375
550
New Jersey
I am actually quite surprised about this claim that Apple would sell only two million 3GS out of 30 million total.

I also find the number surprisingly low (if it's even true, of course). Prior to the 4S introduction, I was accustomed to seeing the 3GS as the second-best selling smartphone in the US (still the case, I think, or maybe the 4 is now second best, or whatever). This would suggest to me that old phone sales would be higher percentage of total. We'll see.
 

Fazzy

macrumors 6502
Oct 12, 2011
255
0
check the tracking device
Im surprised people are still interested in the 3gs. Maybe its just me, but since the iPhone 4 prototype was first shown by gizmodo, the old iPhone shape just didn't cut it. I guess not everyone can afford the latest and greatest though..
 

gramirez2012

macrumors 6502a
Jun 21, 2010
663
12
Chicago, USA
Why would it matter to any rational person how old the phone is? What counts is what you pay, and what you get. And the 3GS is cheaper and not as good as the 4 which is cheaper and not as good as the 4s. Do you think Apple should have released a brand new iPhone 4s light with the same price and features as the 3GS, just so you don't moan about it being two years old?

I am actually quite surprised about this claim that Apple would sell only two million 3GS out of 30 million total.

First of all, I'm not moaning about anything - just making an observation. Second, the age of the device DOES matter. It uses older technologies that might not be able to handle new apps and other features in the near future. Since most cell phone providers' contracts last 2 years, it is important that the consumer make sure that the phone will be able to handle their needs for that entire period.
 

PCClone

macrumors 6502a
Feb 26, 2010
718
0
I am thinking about getting an unlocked one so I can use it on TMO. A little pricey, but since I have a iMac and iPad, I want something that runs iOS 5 and syncs everything through iCloud. just can't bring my self to use a android POS.

Unfortunately, I can't use a JB device since I want to get my corporate email on it.
 

alent1234

macrumors 603
Jun 19, 2009
5,688
170
Call me old fashioned, but kids should not have a phone, let alone a smartphone, until they are in their teens... maybe.

iPhone? no big loss? If you break it or lose it the 3Gs is $375 retail, the 4 is $550.

You are better off putting that money in a college fund for the kid.

a lot cheaper than that on fleabay or craigslist. or just tell your kids no phone and cancel the data plan until an upgrade comes up

with wikipedia and thousands of other educational apps it's an awesome tool for school
 

chimes

macrumors newbie
Aug 16, 2010
19
1
Great phone

The 3GS is actually still a great phone. It does exactly what it did when I bought it 2+ years ago, and then some.
 

Vantage Point

macrumors 65816
Mar 1, 2010
1,169
1
New Jersey
I don't feel so bad getting my first iPhone last March, 3GS, other than I had to pay $49 and now it is free.

Keep in mind that the 3GS freebie is only 8gb. The 4s needs to be at least 16GB because the camera has much more resolution, thus large files that would fill up the storage quickly so I would have trouble with 8gb storage in a 4s.
 

SandynJosh

macrumors 68000
Oct 26, 2006
1,652
2
Amusing

It's amusing to me that a 2.5 year-old design, stripped down to 8gb, iPhone is outselling some of the latest, greatest, no-name Android phones with better specs.

Apparently, impressive RAM and CPU speed is of less importance than the user experience and UI, the ecosystem, and overall product design.
 

Rocketman

macrumors 603
Not only is the 3GS and 4 factory line fully paid for and the parts costs dropped as older tech, they get the same carrier revenue as for an iPhone 4S!

It has the added benefit of taking pressure off any temporary shortages of newer models since people can get something pretty good even if they can't get the latest greatest, some for budgetary reasons and others for personal choices.

I suspect the overall sales figures by "analysts" are underestimates by not fully accounting for sales of older units.

Interesting business model where you still sell an almost three year old phone in large numbers.

Rocketman
 

mantan

macrumors 68000
Nov 2, 2009
1,738
1,015
DFW
perfect first smartphone for the kids if you have an iphone. if they lose it or break it then it's not a big loss. and you get free texting

Absolutely! My 14 year old is out of contract on her first phone. I could spend $29 on another feature phone or get her a free iPhone. (Free for the device, obviously you're still paying for data.)

To the 'kids don't need smartphones' crowd, get back into 2011. This isn't the early days of cell phones where these are $700 devices treated like Faberge eggs. Smart phones are becoming as ubiquitous as regular phones and kids use technology in their every day lives. My daughter's school has an 'open technology' policy where kids are allowed to bring iPods, iPod Touches, laptops, iPads or any other technology to school. They can use it pull up information in class when needed or listen to music when doing work in class.
 

KnightWRX

macrumors Pentium
Jan 28, 2009
15,046
4
Quebec, Canada
I'm still amazed that with the 3GS being "free" w/ contract, the carriers are still trying to sell crappy feature phones for $29 or more w/ contract.

Well considering carriers often require "Smartphones" to have "Smartphone plans" with the contract (50$+ per month to get the subsidized pricing) and the 29$ or more "feature phone" can get buy on a 20$ a month contract...

Yeah...

Sometimes it pays to think before posting. ;)
 

WeedKiller87

macrumors member
Jun 13, 2009
33
0
East Brunswick, NJ
I recently purchased an iPhone 3GS factory unlocked so I could use it with T-Mobile. Even though the 3GS is over 2 years old, it is still such an amazing phone and iOS 5 runs great on it.
 

iSayuSay

macrumors 68040
Feb 6, 2011
3,669
805
To the 'kids don't need smartphones' crowd, get back into 2011. This isn't the early days of cell phones where these are $700 devices treated like Faberge eggs. Smart phones are becoming as ubiquitous as regular phones and kids use technology in their every day lives. My daughter's school has an 'open technology' policy where kids are allowed to bring iPods, iPod Touches, laptops, iPads or any other technology to school. They can use it pull up information in class when needed or listen to music when doing work in class.

iPhone is actually a $700 phones if you buy it unlocked, or ~$2000 if you pay it under contract and yes many people treat it like Faberge eggs ;)
 

mantan

macrumors 68000
Nov 2, 2009
1,738
1,015
DFW
iPhone is actually a $700 phones if you buy it unlocked, or ~$2000 if you pay it under contract and yes many people treat it like Faberge eggs ;)

My point was that it's no longer a rare expensive item that isn't made for the masses. This 3GS is going to cost me a total of $120 or $360 (depending on the data plan) over the course of two years than her current feature phone.

I think a lot of parents who weren't going to drop $200-$400 on an iPhone for their teens will be a lot more open to it when it's the same out of pocket cost as other feature phones.
 

dickdaney

macrumors regular
Dec 10, 2009
153
1
The 3GS is a great phone I recommend it to non-techie people who are looking to but their first smartphone. Most people couldn't care less about the differences between the 3GS, 4, and 4S. Coincidentally though, everyone I've known that has bought a 3GS this year has been a women about the age of 38.
 

DTR

macrumors newbie
Jul 15, 2009
13
0
Essex, UK
I'm still donning my 3G, the 3GS would be a welcome upgrade. With ios5 you still get most of the good stuff.
I may hold out for iPhone 5 and then maybe I can afford an iPhone 4 by then :eek:
 
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