The irony of the low-cost smartphone
While low-cost smartphones, mainly from Chinese companies, are a driving force in the global market, there is still plenty of consumer lust for higher-priced products like the iPhone or Samsung Galaxy devices.
"How far can we take this low-price trend? Are Apple and Samsung doomed?" Byrne asked in an interview. "The answer is no. There's still real cachet around the iPhone. The Apple Store, even in Shanghai, is still as crowded as ever. There's certainly an appetite for these high-end phones and still status associated with an iPhone and with a Galaxy, to a lesser extent. People will still spend money on high-end phones."
Byrne said there's an interesting connection between the two groups of devices.
"There's an argument made that lower-end phones get people into buying smartphones and that [those people] will still have iPhone envy," Byrne said. "In that way, the lower-priced models become the gateway drug of smartphones."
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