Just when we did a horror story analysis on flagship phone prices creeping upwards to the $1500 mark
due to the wonders of 5G components and assembly, as well as the ever-increasing camera and zoom prowess, comes a piece of good news.
Apple already cut the price of its iPhone 11 trio in China, but the Industry Investment Department of the world's fourth-largest phone maker, Xiaomi, now predicts
that 4G Androids will undergo a drastic price decrease in the next few months as well.
It is not hard to fathom why, given the coronavirus pandemic that is sapping demand, but also because 5G will be going into phones with midrange chipsets
, like the rumored Pixel 5
or LG G9
going forward, and users will have more variety to choose from.
After a 50% drop in demand, Apple's resellers have cut the iPhone 11
, Pro, and Max prices by 10-20%, and, given that the sales of the Galaxy S20
series so far are just 60% of the S10 models at that point, Samsung may soon follow suit.
It already announced a 50% buy-back guarantee, but a real tangible price cut may not be far behind in these trying for the global economy times. While 5G modems and antennas, coupled with expensive periscope zoom lens add significantly to the price of the new high-end Android phones, the economic reality is that people may still opt for a new 5G handset, but with Qualcomm's midrange Snapdragon 765
and less capable zooming abilities.
Thus, Google and LG's potential decisions to go with 765 may position their upcoming phones best when it comes to sales during an economic downturn. Hidden in Google code,the "redfin" and "bramble" marks that may turn into Pixel 5 and 5 XL, are based on the new Snapdragon 765 midrange chipset.
It comes with Qualcomm's first built-in 5G modem, so we may be looking at the two Pixel 5 models running on a much cheaper alternative to Snapdragon 865 which on top of that may be more power-efficient and cheaper to implement. Ditto for LG, whose heretofore "flagship" G-series, will reportedly be retooled to use a Snapdragon 765 as well in the G9 ThinQ.
If all those 5G midrangers materialize and with the current freeze in demand, the analysts' predictions for a huge drop in the price of 4G handsets may very well become reality very soon, for the benefit of those who are patient enough to wait before they click on the buy button.