Philip Elmer-DeWitt, CNNMoney:
In a note issued early Monday, Deutsche Bank’s Chris Whitmore is telling clients to expect both — an iPhone 5 and an iPhone 4S.
“With Nokia and RIMM struggling,” he writes, “the time is right for Apple to aggressively penetrate the mid range smart-phone market (i.e. $300-500 category) to dramatically expand its [total addressable market] and market share.”
As Whitmore sees it, an iPhone 4S that is unlocked, priced around $349, and comes with a pre-paid voice plan would “drive significantly greater penetration” into an addressable market that has grown to include 1.5 billion potential customers in 98 countries, two thirds of whom prefer pre-paid plans.
I dunno, this seems very un-Apple to me. I don’t think Apple would bother to split its focus between two phones unless there was something more to justify it than just greater market penetration.
Then again, M.G. Siegler say there’s evidence to support that this will happen, at least eventually. John Gruber says to look at the history of the iPod; Apple will “press technologically at the high end, and they’ll expand into the mid-range market with lower priced models. Why not now?”
I’ll believe it when I see it.