What processor do you think a low-budget iPhone might have?

Discussion in 'iPhone' started by mossme89, Mar 1, 2013.

  1. mossme89 macrumors 6502

    Jul 2, 2009
    So with the rumors of the low-budget iPhone swirling, thought I'd bring up this. What processor do you think a low-budget iPhone might have?

    I'm hoping it will still be reasonable, like if the next iPhone has an A7, it will have at least an A6. An A5 would almost be pointless as it could slow down the development of the other devices, as Apple has to optimize the OS to fit this device as well.
  2. Small White Car macrumors G4

    Small White Car

    Aug 29, 2006
    Washington DC
    Currently the 3 iPhones use 3 different processors: Current, 1-year-old, & 2-years-old

    I could see this "cheap iPhone" thing going 2 different ways.

    If Apple goes to a 4-model system (where the cheap phone is only for emerging markets like China and countries like the US continue to get 1 new phone with 2 old phones but never the cheap phone) then I'd expect the cheap iPhone to share its processor with the 2-year old phone. So that would mean A4 this year and A5 next year for the cheap phone.

    But if Apple is going to stick with 3 models everywhere and the cheap iPhone will replace the "2 year old phone" in the lineup, well then I could really see them having the "cheap" phone and the "1 year old phone" share a processor. Economy of scale would allow them to make the chip cheaper than if they had to make 2 different chips for the 2 cheaper models. (Like they're forced to do now.) In this world the cheap phone's savings would come from case materials and the screen itself.

    So in THAT case I'd say you'd see the A5 in this year's cheap iPhone and the A6 next year.

    I have no idea what Apple will do, but these are the 2 ideas that I consider to be likely.
  3. mossme89 thread starter macrumors 6502

    Jul 2, 2009
    Or they could go the "Nexus route", sell a good phone at a decent price (say $300-$350), and hope to sell them in bulk to make a good profit. The iPhone 5 cost $207 to produce. If they can get the low-budget cost down to $180 while still offering a good product, could be a hit. Still would be a $120-$170 profit per device.

    If this is the case, I would almost rather them not sell it in the US. It might cheapen the brand to sell a "new" phone with 2 year old hardware. You might argue they do this with the iPhone 4, but the thing is most people know it's an old phone. A low budget phone with an A4 sold as "new" could really cheapen things.
  4. Small White Car macrumors G4

    Small White Car

    Aug 29, 2006
    Washington DC
    Exactly my thought. I still have no good sense for whether or not Apple wants to sell this phone everywhere or just in emerging markets.

    The answer to that question will greatly influence what the phone is like, and I really don't know what they're aiming for.
  5. jrswizzle macrumors 603


    Aug 23, 2012
    McKinney, TX
    I think Apple will do away with their current iPhone lineup in favor of a different 3-model set:

    cheaper iPhone
    iPhone +

    Each will be updated on an annual basis, much like the iPad lines are. The cheaper iPhone will be both your "free on contract" phone (16gb) and the $99 on contract phone (32 gb). The normal iPhone will continue its pricing model and the larger iPhone will start in the Note's price range - $299 on contract.

    That being said, I'd say the cheaper iPhone will be one processor behind the regular iPhone - so in this case, the A5 - same as the iPod touch. Meanwhile, the larger iPhone would likely get a smaller version of the A#X chip - probably the same chip the iPad mini w/ retina will receive.

    Just my thoughts.
  6. mossme89 thread starter macrumors 6502

    Jul 2, 2009
    If they sell in emerging markets and skip the US, that could work well for the brand (though some people might be angry.) Though, if they sell it here, they really shouldn't sell something obselete.

    Think of the Android phone manufacturer ZTE. Despite the fact they're getting the Nvidia Tegra 4 first, I still think of them as making crappy phones because of the amount of budget phones they sell with lackluster 2-3 year old hardware. I wouldn't want that to happen to Apple's brand, even to a lesser degree.

    Should they sell old hardware in emerging markets, it might not be a big deal, but if they sell it in the US, it could be. Think of car manufacturers. They sell sub-par, cheap cars in 3rd world countries. Especially Toyota from what I've seen. But they don't sell those same cars in more developed countries and it doesn't affect the brand's image. And in these 3rd world countries the brand is still a good one because they see the nicer cars from the US and other 1st world countries.

    If that's the route they're taking, I wouldn't be surprised if they put in an A6 chip as the next iPhone would be an A7.

    And I'm guessing you think the iPhone + would have a larger screen? If that's the case, it might not even need the A#X depending on what they make the resolution. If it's comparable to the 1136 x 640 iPhone, then it could just be a A#, if they decide to keep retina and make it something like 1600 x 900 (or just a higher resolution), then I can see an underclocked and smaller A#X
  7. 617aircav Suspended

    Jul 2, 2012
    Why would they go the nexus route? They are already selling boatloads of the iphone. Never heard of a company with record sales reducing the price of the product. It does not make business sense.
  8. CEmajr macrumors 601

    Dec 18, 2012
    Charlotte, NC
    They should just give it the same internals of the 4 but with cheaper build quality. Plastic similar to the 3GS.
  9. Abazigal macrumors G3


    Jul 18, 2011
    While at the same time having to factor in applecare and Apple's in-house services (which earn no revenue but cost money to maintain)?

    That profit would basically erode in no time! :p
  10. syd430 Guest

    That's not what the "Nexus route" is at all. It's not about selling at a lower price and hoping to make up the lower margins with quantity (or "bulk" as you refer to it). It's about getting people to use Google services and making money through such services.
  11. Agent-P macrumors 68030


    Dec 5, 2009
    The Tri-State Area
    I was going to post something similar. The point of the Nexus devices is to set a baseline for all other Android manufacturers to follow. It also provides a pure Android/Google experience without manufacturer bloatware or skins on it which may potentially reduce the user experience.

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