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Apple’s most expensive iPhone is the device most people want

Updated Oct 3rd, 2017 12:24AM EDT
iPhone X vs iPhone 8
Image: Apple

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iPhone X pre-orders aren’t slated to open up for another few weeks, but demand for Apple’s forthcoming flagship iPhone is already quite strong. According to a new 4,000-person survey put together by RBC Capital Markets, 28% of respondents indicated an interest in purchasing the iPhone X. Meanwhile, 17% of respondents expressed an interested in the iPhone 8 with 20% expressing an interest in the iPhone 8 Plus.

“Our survey helps confirm our thesis that the rich feature set and differentiated design of the iPhone X will enable a mix shift toward it despite its significant price premium,” RBC said in a research note obtained by TheStreet. What’s more, the survey also revealed that 57% of individuals interested in the iPhone X are likely to opt for the pricier 256GB model as opposed to the 64GB model. This of course all bodes well for Apple given that the 256GB model carries a $150 premium over the lower tiered model.

All told, it’s far too soon to be calling Apple’s 2017 iPhone lineup a dud, as some have prematurely done. Especially amidst reports that iPhone 8 sales aren’t exactly breaking records, some have trotted out the old line that we’re already at peak iPhone. The reality, though, is that many users who have been clamoring for a new iPhone design are simply waiting to get their hands on the iPhone X as opposed to picking up the iPhone 8, which while a solid device, looks essentially the same as Apple’s 2014 iPhone 6 lineup.

To this point, reputed analyst Ming-Chi Kuo last week explained that iPhone X sales are poised to skyrocket once Apple gets a handle on production.

iPhone X is seen as the first model refresh since iPhone 6 from 2014, offering a revamped form factor design. We think Apple’s (US) core fans and some iPhone 6 and 6s users are willing to pay a hefty price for this upgraded device. As regards Face ID, we’re now convinced that TrueDepth camera (3D sensing) creates a far stronger user experience than those of Apple’s rivals. We also think that if Apple can effectively communicate this message of an exceptional user experience before preorders begin and prior to launch, it will go a long way to addressing some concerns that may hold back potential demand, thereby boosting preorder momentum.

While iPhone users have historically never had a problem paying a premium price for a premium product, the success of the iPhone X will likely be predicated on how well Face ID performs relative to Touch ID and how users take to the somewhat controversial notch design of the iPhone X. That said, if early interest is any indication, it appears that the iPhone X is poised to become a huge hit.

Yoni Heisler Contributing Writer

Yoni Heisler has been writing about Apple and the tech industry at large with over 15 years of experience. A life long expert Mac user and Apple expert, his writing has appeared in Edible Apple, Network World, MacLife, Macworld UK, and TUAW.

When not analyzing the latest happenings with Apple, Yoni enjoys catching Improv shows in Chicago, playing soccer, and cultivating new TV show addictions.