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Why a cheaper iPhone 15 would obliterate Android next year

Updated Dec 30th, 2022 1:52PM EST
iPhone 14 Pro on an Apple coffee table book
Image: Jonathan Geller, BGR

If there were ever a time for Apple to reduce the cost of a brand-new iPhone, it would probably be next year. A lower iPhone 15 entry price would turn the handset into a must-buy gadget for anyone who didn’t need to upgrade this year. An aggressive price would also entice Android users looking for a new phone that won’t break the bank. After all, the economic forecasts are bleak, and smartphone sales will likely continue to suffer.

But there’s another incredible side effect of pricing the iPhone 15 below the iPhone 14’s base cost: All the older iPhones that Apple will continue to sell alongside the iPhone 15 series will, in turn, see significant price cuts as a result.

Apple’s iPhone 14 series isn’t performing especially well for two reasons. First of all, the iPhone 14 Pro and iPhone 14 Pro Max were selling very well, but the most recent COVID lockdown in China forced Apple’s main supplier to reduce production significantly.

It happened during the busy holiday shopping season, meaning millions of buyers could not get the iPhone 14 Pro or Pro Max in time for Christmas.

iPhone 14 Display
Apple iPhone 14. Image source: Christian de Looper for BGR

The other problem concerns the iPhone 14 and 14 Plus, which aren’t selling as well as Apple expected. That’s why Apple is considering a price cut for the iPhone 15 and 15 Plus in the first place, according to a recent report.

That seems to go against what you’d expect from a phone maker like Apple. In a best-case scenario for consumers, Apple would keep the same prices in place next year. But the rising costs of manufacturing goods could force Apple to raise prices rather than lower them.

However, the smartphone market, except for Apple, is suffering. And things might get worse next year. That’s why a cheaper iPhone 15 would make a lot of sense. It would put pressure on Android vendors, help Apple sell more iPhones, and bring more customers to its digital services.

With that in mind, let’s see what a $100 price cut would mean for Apple’s fall 2023 iPhone lineup.

Why a $100 price cut for the iPhone 15 is so exciting

The iPhone 14 Plus starts at $899 right now. Cutting the price for the iPhone 15 Plus by $100 would drop it to $799. But that’s how much the base iPhone 14 costs. That means the cheapest iPhone 15 would cost $699. That would be an incredible deal for a phone that essentially becomes a stripped-down version of the iPhone 14 Pro.

As a reminder, I’ve often defended the iPhone 14, explaining the handset is basically an iPhone 13 Pro missing a few features. The iPhone 15 would follow the same pattern, losing the telephoto lens on the back and 120Hz ProMotion display.

But the iPhone 15 should get the Dynamic Island notch next year. The iPhone 15 would look like a brand-new phone, whereas the iPhone 14 has the same design as the iPhone 13.

Apple iPhone 14 Pro Dynamic Island
iPhone 14 Pro’s Dynamic Island in action. Image source: Christian de Looper for BGR

Things get even better if you’re the kind of iPhone buyer that purchases older models when the brand new one launches. When the iPhone 15 arrives, the iPhone 14 and 14 Plus should be $100 cheaper than they are now, dropping to $699 and $799, respectively. But if the iPhone 15 starts at $699, Apple might have to give the 2022 phones a $200 price cut.

That gives us a $599 iPhone 14 and a $699 iPhone 14 Plus. These are excellent prices. You won’t get the same value out of any mid-range Android phone in 2023.

Once the iPhone 15 arrives, we’ll likely see Apple retire the iPhone 12. But the iPhone 13 and 13 mini should be available for one more year.

The current mini starts at $599, while the iPhone 13 costs $699. Here, Apple would have to operate price cuts similar to the iPhone 14. The iPhone 13 mini could go as low as $399, while the regular 13 could cost $499. There won’t be a $499 Android phone as good as an iPhone.

This is all speculation based on an iPhone 15 price cut rumor that began spreading nine months before Apple’s launch event. But if Apple is going to give the new iPhones a lower price, then the price cut will instantly impact Apple’s entire iPhone lineup. Buying an iPhone for your mom will be even easier, even though 2023 will be incredibly challenging.

Chris Smith Senior Writer

Chris Smith has been covering consumer electronics ever since the iPhone revolutionized the industry in 2008. When he’s not writing about the most recent tech news for BGR, he brings his entertainment expertise to Marvel’s Cinematic Universe and other blockbuster franchises.

Outside of work, you’ll catch him streaming almost every new movie and TV show release as soon as it's available.