Apple may sell iPhone 14 as a subscription service
According to a new Bloomberg report, Apple is considering selling iPhones and iPads directly as part of a hardware subscription service. This service may launch next year, possibly making the iPhone 14 series the first one to offer it.
This move would be consistent with Apple’s overall push toward subscription services. It has increasingly emphasised recurring subscription services such as Apple Music, Apple TV Plus, Apple News Plus, Apple Fitness Plus, and Apple Arcade as critical new revenue streams during the last several years.
Numerous services have already been integrated into the company’s Apple One bundles.
In terms of hardware, we’ve already seen a similar shift: the company introduced a monthly subscription plan for its AppleCare extended warranties in 2019.
Also, since 2015, the company has offered its iPhone Upgrade Program, which enables users to pay for AppleCare and an iPhone over a 24-month period with the option to trade in their device after 12 months of payments. Both of those apps already have a strong resemblance to a hardware subscription in a number of respects.
According to Bloomberg, the monthly charge would not be the device’s purchase price divided by 12 or 24 months, but rather a yet-to-be-determined monthly fee, possibly with the ability to upgrade to a new device as it becomes available.
And, like the brand’s other subscription services, it would be linked to a user’s current Apple ID, with the option of bundling in AppleCare or Apple One.
It’s also likely to be an option during the checkout process on Apple’s online store and in-store locations. Typically, Apple accounts are linked to a user’s credit or debit card.
At the moment, you can pay Apple monthly for its services and an iPhone – but they remain separate from each other.
It’s difficult to picture Apple merely lending equipment on a monthly basis. Instead, the company may simply be seeking to eliminate the middleman and expand its instalment-based payment offers to other products.