Experts examining the pricing of the latest smartphones were shocked to learn that they are becoming exorbitantly expensive!
Most assume that the more prevalent a technology becomes, the less expensive and more widespread it should be. For the past almost half decade, smartphone prices appeared to be following that trend also. However, during the past year, prices for smartphones have begun again to creep upward.
Who is to blame?
Some market analysts blame this current trend solely on manufacturers. In the past year, manufacturers have taken to offering premium versions of their smartphones. Manufacturers like Apple and Samsung claim that the increased cost comes from the improved technology and more advanced features.
You will find more statistics at Statista
Additionally, they blame the consumer for demanding many advancements in their smartphone technology. In other words, they tout the cliche “the customer is always right” as their core reasoning for increased smartphone prices.
However, when we look at how much each phone cost during production, the price appears to be half of what companies like Apple and Samsung are selling them for. The current iPhone X costs consumers a whopping $999. However, the production costs are only around $412.
Enormous profit margins
Similarly, Samsung’s production costs for the latest Galaxy Note 8 stand at around $307. However, the consumer will fork out $930 to own one of these premium phones. And what are the primary innovations involved in these phones? Faster processors and better cameras. As many commentators note, a new iPhone X costs the same as two laptops.
Sinisterly, other experts claim that manufacturers are brainwashing the consumer into purchasing these smartphones. In Alex Riley’s documentary Secrets of the Superbrands, Riley noticed how these large corporations pushing these smartphones approach sales and marketing like a religion.
In fact, when a fan of the Apple brand was put through an MRI machine, his brain lit up in the same region as religious fervor does, when researchers showed him images of Apple products. Therefore, in other words, are these profiteering smartphone brands taking advantage of consumer addiction?
Planned obsolescence a poorly kept secret
It is poorly kept secret that Apple, for example, uses planned obsolescence to encourage consumers to purchase allegedly upgraded products every couple of years, repeatedly. Apple explicitly holds customers to ransom by tying customers to the brand, by making their products exclusive.
Additionally, after paying the price of the phone, consumers then spend hundreds and thousands of dollars in exclusive accessories. Frustratingly, those accesories are unique to their product, and the consumer cannot use them any competitor’s product.
In the meantime, the statistics do not reveal how similar smartphones from places like China are available at a remarkably lower cost. Not only do these Chinese products cost less, but they also have technology that is equivalent to those used by Samsung and Apple.
In other words, if people are willing to break their brand addictions, there are indeed cheaper alternatives that provide the futuristic innovations they desire.
The first world is essentially turning into a corporate dictatorship
The core superbrands have gradually made people more and more dependant on owning an item like a smartphone. Much of life is dependant upon internet connections these days, and the most convenient form of internet interface is on a smartphone. People pay their bills, stay in touch with loved ones, apply for jobs, do their banking, and much more, on their smartphones.
In fact, smartphones now contain much of people’s entertainment. Additionally, they contain their sentimental memories via the camera, and give people a sense that they are not alone.
The world has changed so much in the past decade, that many young people do not have any recollection of a world before handheld computers, in the form of smartphones. Society expects the population to have that kind of connectivity, in the same way, they expect the population to have access to running water and electricity.
Still, however, this picture of modern society is a depressing one. The waste accumulated by self-centered profiteering groups like Apple and Samsung means that old technologies fill landfills and lead to desecration of the environment. In a world that appears concerned with climate change, many people are not putting their money where their mouth is.
Some innovative and alternative ideas exist
The European Parliament wishes “to set a minimum resistance criteria for products and better inform consumers about their durability. The aim is to encourage repair and reduce waste.“ They recommend entrepreneurs come up with technologies that are more environmentally friendly. For example, the European company Fairphone is developing a modular phone that consumers can easily upgrade and repair.
If consumers think out of the box, there are ways to keep up with society and remain out of the clutches of corporate dictatorships brands such as Apple. While prices for the superbrands are rising, prices for smartphones, in general, are still within an affordable range.