Tomorrow’s iPhone event is just around the corner. Today, analyst Mike Abramsky with RBC Capital Markets said he expects Apple to introduce a new iPhone this week, possibly an “iPhone 5” or “iPhone 4S”. In addition, he doesn’t expect Apple to introduce a second, cheaper iPhone model, but instead reduce the prices of its existing lineup.
In fact, he predicts that the iPhone 4 price will drop to the $99 subsidized price, and $499 without a contract. Abramsky also believes that Apple will retain the iPhone 3GS in its lineup, offering it for free with a two-year carrier agreement, or $399 contract-free.
This would be a significant change from past years because Apple has usually discontinued its two-year-old iPhone models. Last year, when the iPhone 4 launched, the iPhone 3GS was dropped to $99 with a contract, and later on the price was reduced to $49.
Last June, he expected Apple to offer the iPhone 3GS for free once the iPhone 5 launches.
We expect Apple to reduce the price of the prior iPhone 4 to $99 subsidized ($499 unsubsidized) and the iPhone 3GS to $0 subsidized ($399 unsubsidized, see 11/06/29 note for more detail and rationale); the prior iPhone 4 may be available only with 8GB memory.
Apple is expected to unveil its next-generation iPhone and iPod touch on October 4th at 10 AM PST, during a press event. Numerous rumors have suggested that these would be an iPhone 4Sand an iPod touch with 3G capabilities (which I don’t see happening).