A few younger and older family members ordered iPhone X last week and arose in the middle of the night to complete the transaction. A few are students. Others are on a fixed income. Can they afford an $1,149 smartphone?
Maybe not. But it doesn’t matter. To many of us, an iPhone is an affordable luxury. It’s the one techno-gadget that is the best you can get, sans diamond studded case. I understand the sentiment. Apple is a premium brand that is affordable for many members of the masses. But is the growing cost of going Apple worth it?
Buy The Month
Apple and various cellphone carriers have plans to get you into an iPhone with monthly payments. Thanks to the iPhone Upgrade Program you can get a new iPhone X every year if you want. What about iPad? Mac? Watch? AirPods?
The growing cost of going Apple means I need to take a different perspective on owning these so-called affordable luxuries. Of all that Apple sells, iPhone sells the most, gets used the most by most of us, and can be viewed as the standard bearer of luxuries for the masses. You know. Like chocolate Haagen-Dazs ice cream.
Let me take a look at the annual cost of going all in on Apple but in a measured ownership. New iPhone every two years. New Watch every two years. New Mac every four years. New iPad every three years. That means an iPhone X would be just under $50 per month. Apple Watch with LTE would be just under $20 a month over two years. An average MacBook Pro would be just under $45 a month for four years. Just under $30 a month for the smaller iPad Pro with smart keyboard and pencil.
Do the math. That’s almost $150 per month on an ongoing basis for what some would consider average Apple product ownership. Your situation might be different, so the ongoing monthly price tag could be lower. Or, higher.
That $150 a month does not include Apple TV or AirPods or Apple Music or Apple Care for anything. Toss those into the mix, spread them out as payments over, say, four years, and you’re looking at nearly $200 a month; ongoing, perhaps forever.
Is that not the growing cost of going Apple?
Can you get similar functionality in usability for a fraction of the monthly price tag above? Oh yeah. So, just how affordable are these luxury technology gadgets?