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Apple has an iPhone upgrade problem. That much is very clear after Wednesday afternoon's investor note from CEO Tim Cook in which the company lowered its expected revenue to $84 billion from its initial projections of between $89 billion and $93 billion for its most recent quarter ending Dec. 29.
"In some developed markets, iPhone upgrades also were not as strong as we thought they would be," Cook writes in his note, noting a number of factors at play from fewer carrier subsidies to consumers upgrading batteries for $29 instead of spending hundreds on a new phone.
Apple - Stock - Percent - Trading - Thursday
Apple stock fell over 9 percent in early trading Thursday.
Over Black Friday weekend, I was one of those people waiting for the right deal to upgrade an older phone. My 17-year-old brother has an aging iPhone 6S Plus. And while he enjoyed the big screen and headphone jack and didn't want to upgrade to the latest batch of iPhones, he's changed his tune on the XR once Walmart offered a $300 gift card for those who went to a store to buy during that shopping weekend.
Hours - Store - IPhone - Walmart - Printer
We spent hours in the store waiting to buy a new iPhone, but the Walmart printer was broken, sending us and others home without a new XR.
Other deals in the coming weeks, including Apple's more aggressive trade-in pitch that offered $250 for the 6S Plus to bring the XR down to $499, were tempting. But spending over $500 in one shot for a new phone (when including taxes) wasn't enticing.
Idea - Form - Apple - Gift - Card
Nor was the idea of getting that $250 in the form of an Apple gift card (or the amount remaining after paying off the tax on the phone), which is the other option that Apple gives you if you decide to pay off your phone in installment plans.
So we waited and,...
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