Monday was a slow news day for technology writers. Whenever tech news gets thin, members of the technorati elite politburo trot out old memes as if they were politicians before an election. Zach Epstein says, “The mythical ‘iPhone killer’ finally exists.” Uh huh. Sure.
Sidebar: Congressional approval rating is barely double digits, yet more than 90-percent of incumbents get re-elected. Does not that say more about the voters than who they vote for?
A time honored meme about iPhone is that every year there is a new iPhone killer or two on the market. Last year it was Samsung’s highly touted Galaxy Note 7. That notion went up in flames, amirite?
What about iPhone X and the 2017 challengers?
Is it Android founder Andy Rubin’s Essential smartphone? Rubirosa’s pizza place down the street from my home in Brooklyn will sell more pizza’s this year than Essential sells smartphones (just a guess, but I know which of the two I prefer).
Is it Google’s new Pixel 2 and Pixel 2 XL models? Are those iPhone killers? Google never announces how many Pixels it sells and it’s not available all over the world or even on all U.S. carriers, and seems plagued already by a host of screen, sound, and other production problems, so I’ll pass on that one, despite high marks for the camera.
Chris Smith thinks the iPhone X killer might be the Google Pixel 3. Next year.
How about Samsung’s new Galaxy S8 or Galaxy Note 8?
Surprisingly, those models do not actually sell in iPhone-like numbers, despite being packed with features and functions that customers don’t use much, but that narrow perspective is based upon, 1) Samsung doesn’t say how many Galaxy models are sold each year; Apple does announce iPhone sales numbers, 2) interviews with co-workers who bought Samsung in the past but switched to iPhone X this year, 3) the lack of many Galaxy Note 8 models in the wild vs. iPhones.
Nope. Not Samsung. Not this year.
A bunch of Chinese smartphone makers have models with similar specifications to various iPhone models, some at half to one-third an iPhone’s price (depends upon which model is used for comparison) but they seldom sell at similar numbers and since iPhone’s sales continue to grow, I don’t seen any iPhone killers coming out of China these days.
Wait. My bad. I didn’t read the fine print in Zach Epstein’s article on the newest iPhone killer.
When Apple first launched the original iPhone back in 2007, every rival smartphone maker had the same cavalier response. In a nutshell, they believed iPhone was dead on arrival. A few short years later, the iPhone took over the smartphone business and left a string of dead industry giants in its wake.
Since then, every year, just like clockwork and elections, someone launches a new iPhone killer with better specifications and a lower price tag and the so-called killer device gets killed in the marketplace by… insert my famous drum roll here… the iPhone.
Most iPhone killers fizzled out as quickly as they appeared, like the Palm Pre and, most recently, the Essential phone. Others like the Motorola Droid sold pretty well and even stuck around for a few generations, but they didn’t come anywhere close to toppling the iPhone. In fact, they didn’t even put a dent in iPhone sales.
That was then. This is now. It’s 2017 already. iPhone X is the future of smartphones but you can buy one– or, at least, order one– today.
What is this iPhone killer that has finally managed to topple one of Apple’s iPhones? It’s… an iPhone.
Uh oh. You know where this is going, right? What phone toppled one of Apple’s iPhones? Well, let’s see. iPhone 6s and 6s Plus likely outsell iPhone SE. It’s likely iPhone 7 and 7 Plus outsell iPhone 6s and 6s Plus. I bet even iPhone X outsells all the others by this time next year.
It appears as though the iPhone X’s success is coming at the expense of the iPhone 8. And we’re not talking about a tiny impact here. According to the analyst’s latest note, Apple is expected to cut iPhone 8 production by between 50% and 60% from the December quarter to the March quarter because there’s hardly any demand since it all shifted to the iPhone X. So the only phone that has been able to put a real dent in iPhone demand is another iPhone.
Somehow this is supposed to be insightful analysis but it seems more like slow news day drivel. Every new iPhone outsells old iPhones. Yes, iPhone 8 and 8 Plus are old relative to iPhone X. All those aforementioned iPhones– SE, 6s and 6s Plus, 7 and 7 Plus, and, yes, iPhone 8 and 8 Plus are there because not everyone wants to buy an iPhone X for $1,000.
That iPhone X is putting a dent in iPhone 8 and 8 Plus sales is a gimme on a slow news day, that moment and location in the space time continuum where where dreamers dream and editors drag out old news memes and add a twist of lemon to make them appear fresh.
Yes, the newest iPhone killer is an iPhone. Just like it was last year.