Why are there no leather cases of same quality cheaper than Apple's option?

dmx

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Oct 25, 2008
570
635
I have the Saddle Brown Apple leather case on my 6 Plus. It's awesome. But I've been thinking, on a mass scale, this thing probably doesn't cost more than $5-$6 to make (am I wrong?)

Why are there no options of the same quality for less money? Surely there is money to be made, even at far less than $50?
 

kapalua12

macrumors 6502
Jun 20, 2010
300
1
United States
I have the Saddle Brown Apple leather case on my 6 Plus. It's awesome. But I've been thinking, on a mass scale, this thing probably doesn't cost more than $5-$6 to make (am I wrong?)

Why are there no options of the same quality for less money? Surely there is money to be made, even at far less than $50?
I like my Apple leather blue case on my iPhone 6s+. Only two complaints:
1. It's slippery and easy to drop
2. It provides little protection to the bottom of my phone.

I also have the Spigen Slim Armor case for better grippiness and overall better protection but it does make
the phone bulkier.
 

mcdj

macrumors G3
Jul 10, 2007
8,859
3,722
NYC
I'm not sure there actually is a ton of money to be made on a leather case priced lower than Apple's.

Apple's bulk buying power and manufacturing resources put it way ahead of the means of most potential competitors.

Combine that with the fact that most people who want a leather case will probably just buy the one that's quickest and easiest to buy, the one that they can easily examine in person, and the one that is most easily returnable if they don't like it. Only one leather case ticks all those boxes...Apple's.

So after you factor out all the potential leather case customers that will swallowed up by Apple, there probably just aren't enough customers left to make the considerable undertaking of producing a leather case worthwhile.

Remember, to make a case like Apple's, a manufacturer would need;

-Thin durable leather in a variety of colors.
-A shell precision designed to accomodate the leather and lining, while being easily installable/removable.
-2 sizes for the shell.
-Precision machinery or skilled labor to do the binding/glueing/assembly.

And after the effort and investment put into expensive leather and machines/labor, Apple is gonna change the phone in 12 months, likely rendering the case design obsolete.

Given the costs and short lived demand, most smaller players in the case market will just opt for robotic production of injection molded cases that don't require a large investment in exotic materials and skilled labor.

That's why nicely made leather cases from companies other than Apple are typically more expensive than Apple's.
 

venom600

macrumors 6502a
Mar 23, 2003
802
444
Los Angeles, CA
I bought a brown Gmyle case for my 6 Plus a year ago from Amazon for $16. It's definitely real leather (it smelled amazing when it was brand new), but it doesn't have any of the logos or anything on it. I've dropped it, gotten it wet, and everything else in the daily use of the year since I've had it and it looks flawless, zero patina. I mention that because Apple's leather cases tend to show wear very quickly.

http://www.amazon.com/GMYLE-Leather-Genuine-Anti-scratch-microfiber/dp/B00SQUQHL2/ref=sr_1_4?ie=UTF8&qid=1446102443&sr=8-4&keywords=gmyle+iphone+6&refinements=p_89:GMYLE,p_n_feature_nine_browse-bin:10030582011
 

rgarjr

macrumors 603
Apr 2, 2009
6,470
313
Southern California
The thing I don't like about the Apple leather case is it develops small bumps sometimes on the left and right edges. Don't know if it's because of moisture or what.