iPhone growth has stalled, according to documents leaking out of the widely-reported Apple/Samsung legal spat over who’s the innovator and who’s the copycat. In a strange turn of events, the Cupertino giant has been forced to unveil its secret vision and plans for the future, and according to one document, it admits it needs a bigger iPhone.
Early last week, a leaked email exchange between Steve Jobs and various executives provided a treasure trove of information about Apple’s plans with its television business. Later in the week, additional documents revealed the company’s plans with the smartphone business, including the admittance that size matters.
“Customers want what we don’t have,” reads one of the slides leaking out of the courtroom as Apple and Samsung are having their arms twisted to show internal documents that may hold evidence regarding potentially willful wrongdoings.
According to a second slide, Apple admits it needs less expensive hardware and bigger screens. The exact wording is, “Strongest demand coming from less expensive & larger screen smartphones” and continues with actual screen sizes and sweet-spot prices. “Carriers have strong interest in capping iPhone due to one or more factors: high share; subsidy premium; ‘unfriendly’ policies; lack of alignment,” reads a bullet point.
Another says, “Competitors have drastically improved their hardware and in some cases their ecosystems,” while yet another notes that rivals like Samsung are “Spending ‘obscene’ amounts of money on advertising and/or carrier/channel to gain traction.”
The Cupertino, California-based computer company hardly ever admits that competitors are getting it right. While these slides may appear taken right out of an upcoming keynote presentation, they are actually guidance slides for internal eyes only. In other words, the cat is out of the bag.
There was little doubt Apple wouldn’t launch a larger-screen iPhone this year, but this leak provides even more confirmation that such plans are indeed underway. The iPhone 6 is said to arrive in at least one bigger-screen variation (4.7 inches), with a bigger one (5.5 inches) planned for later.
Apple has already announced the timetable for its Worldwide Developers Conference this year, with some analysts holding that the company needs to push out its big-screen iPhone sooner than the usual fall announcement date. If these projections hold any water, Apple could indeed unveil its next-generation smartphone a few months earlier this year. Other new products to look out for in 2014 include a rumored TV box refresh and the iWatch.