Five Reasons the iPhone 4S is Selling Faster than the Original iPhone 4
Don't let the critical disappointment fool you – millions of Americans can't wait to get their hands on the latest iPhone.
Last week, Apple (NASDAQ: AAPL) received an endless list of complaints for unveiling a rehashed version of its current iPhone instead of an entirely new device. Some investors reacted out of fear, but most decided to wait and see what happened next. Now it seems that the latter group was much smarter, as Apple announced today that iPhone 4S pre-orders surpassed the one million mark in a mere 24 hours.
Why the rush? Why are consumers buying up the iPhone 4S when the iPhone 5 could be less than 12 months away from release?
5. People Really Need a Personal Assistant
By Apple's account, Siri is the “intelligent assistant that helps you get things done.” The company's official video shows several examples of how you will soon be able to interact with your iPhone without having to press a single button.
Is this a revolution? Probably not. In the time it takes to ask Siri, “Will it be sunny this weekend in Miami?” I can click on weather.com and get the same results. Granted, I can't do that while driving (not safely, at least), but Apple isn't promoting Siri as a feature you should use while operating a motor vehicle. Rather, in the official video, a man in a parked car asks, “What's the traffic like around here?” His hands were free, and he wasn't doing anything important. But, in the interest of using the latest technology, he chose to speak to his phone instead of interacting with it the old-fashioned way.
On the other hand, Siri could allow you to send faster text messages, as most people are able to speak much faster than they can type. It could also be helpful in doing things when your hands aren't free – the baking scenario was the perfect example (first a woman asks how many cups are in 12 ounces, then she tells her iPhone to set her timer for 30 minutes, all the while slicing bananas into a bowl and lifting a tray of muffins into the oven).
Like or loathe it, many consumers – at least one million of them – seem to be intrigued by the potential that Siri has to offer.
4. That Camera is a Sleeping Giant
It is amazing how positively people have reacted to the eight megapixel camera being added to the iPhone 4S.
As someone with a separate (and vastly superior) camera, I was not too excited about this feature. But if I were an Average Joe looking to point-and-shoot photos of my grandkids, my trip to Chicago, or my dog performing tricks, I might have been intrigued by Apple's offering. Since most people fit into this category, the iPhone 4S's camera is already getting a lot of attention.
3. Sprint Customers Finally Come On Board
This one's a no-brainer. While I doubt that there are one million Sprint (NYSE: S) customers who suddenly decided to pre-order an iPhone 4S, you can bet that a good portion of the orders are coming from Sprint customers that have never owned an iPhone before.
2. Many Believe that the iPhone 4S Really is the iPhone 5
I'm not sure where this started, but there are a growing number of people who believe that the iPhone 4S is actually an iPhone 5. They think that Apple decided to change the name to the 4S because the company is planning to release an even bigger upgrade next year.
Well, duh – a bigger upgrade is bound to arrive in 2012. That doesn't mean that the iPhone 4S is really an iPhone 5. In fact, while many argue that the critical reception would have been better if Apple had replaced the “4S” with a “5,” I think it would have been far worse. Apple can get away with calling its latest phone a “4S,” which is essentially code for “pre-iPhone 5 upgrade.” However, if this – the very phone we see today – hard turned out to be the iPhone 5, what would consumers have to look forward to in 2012? Another minor upgrade? At this point, there's still hope for a revolution.
1. Consumers Don't Care What's Around the Corner – They Want the Latest Technology NOW
Whether it's Siri, iOS 5, the eight megapixel camera, or some other tweak, consumers are constantly in search of the latest and greatest from Apple. Earlier this year, they flocked to retailers to get the iPad 2. They jumped headfirst into Lion, paying as much as $70 to get their hands on a copy. And now they will eagerly buy up iOS 5, which from the looks of it could be a solid upgrade – albeit one that is exclusive to the more recent generation iPhones and iPod Touches.
For some users, that isn't enough. They don't simply want an iOS upgrade – they want the latest phone. Thus, more than one million people have pre-ordered the iPhone 4S, making it the fastest-selling iPhone in the company's history.
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