Spoiler alert: iPhone 7 and 7 Plus have been released. A total shock, right? Of course. What we didn’t expect, however, is that major carriers — AT&T, Sprint, T-Mobile and Verizon to be exact – are offering “free” iPhone 7 handsets if consumers trade in an eligible device. These may be the most generous incentives to upgrade we’ve seen in the smartphone era, and may be in place to combat users who are holding onto their phones longer and longer due to the dissolution of subsidized smartphone plans. The terms of each promotion differ to an extent, but each carrier seems to require eligible devices be in good cosmetic and working order in order to qualify. This is great news for anyone who took your advice and purchased protective accessories such as a case and screen protection, but other consumers may be out of luck— this time. However, you can ensure that they don’t make the same mistake twice.
If it isn’t evident, Hero phone unveils just don’t seem to have the punch they used to. Sure, they still receive heaping helpings of media attention and consumer demand, but the electricity in the air has certainly subsided. This wane in excitement isn’t attributable to any one issue, but we have our theories. In our view, the loss of excitement comes down to two main factors: market maturation and a slowdown in innovation. It’s happened to Samsung, Apple, LG, and virtually every other handset manufacturer in the space. To our more savvy readers, you know this is similar to other market and technology cycles, and it doesn’t mean the sky is falling. But it could signal the final days of the golden era of smartphones. With that said, it’s clear a company or two is openly defying the notion that there’s little room to innovate. It remains to be seen what impact – if any – the launch of these alt-smartphones will have, but it will be interesting to watch and will most certainly impact you and your bottom line positively if it takes off. But before we move forward, let’s take a look back.
If a consumer’s top frustration is out-of-stock items, provide endless aisles of accessory options to keep them coming back.