Apple decided to release an iPhone 12 Mini, but it’s not designed by innovation

The numbers this 2020 tell us a story

Apple has officially expanded its flagship phone series lineup with the introduction of the 5.4-inch iPhone 12 Mini, touted to be the world’s smallest 5G-equipped phone as of this date. Why did it deem so?

We checked with research firm Canalys on what made the Cupertino giant launch a new model. As we all know by now, a lot of phone manufacturers are releasing new models above 5.5 inches, and they now make up the majority of the phones being sold around the globe.

H1 2019H1 2020
Below 5.5”14%9%
5.5”-6.4″77%55%
6.5” and above9%36%
Data provided by Canalys

One factor that they see into phone manufacturers making bigger-screen devices is based on content consumption. “Smartphones with larger screens continue to show rapid momentum, driven by the increasing quality of mobile gaming, and social media’s lurch towards video content, ” said Ben Stanton, Senior Analyst at Canalys.

Price also plays into factor. They’ve seen a trend where smartphones now ship with cheaper price tags but are just as capable. Smartphone shipments with SRPS at US$ 600 to US$799 (~PHP 29,300 to PHP 38,900) have grown by 10% from last year, while the more expensive phones priced at US$800 (~PHP 40,000) significantly decreased by 23%. “Amid COVID-19, ultra-premium smartphones have been weak. Increasingly customers are sucked down into competitive sub-premium devices between US$600-US$799.” 

That says a lot with the market responding to purchases made with Apple’s iPhones. True enough, iPhone sales this H1 2020 have increased from the same period last year (now at 14.8% from 11.8% in H1 2019) and is attributed to making more sales from — surprise — smaller phones. “Apple has performed exceptionally in 2020, driven by the cheaper iPhone 11, and the budget-friendly iPhone SE,” noted Stanton.

With that being said, these may be the factors on why Apple decided to release a mini version of the iPhone 12. Will it still tell the same story this holiday season? Only a few weeks to find out.

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Carl writes for WalasTech when he's not working full-time. Give him tips and/or leads at [email protected].