Apple uses trade-ins to boost iPhone sales
Apple is experimenting with iPhone marketing strategies it rarely uses, such as discount promotions via generous device buyback terms, to help boost sales.
Company executives moved some marketing staff from other projects to work on bolstering sales of the latest handsets in October, about a month after the iPhone XS went on sale and in the days around the launch of the iPhone XR, according to a person familiar with the situation.
This person described it as a "fire drill" and a possible admission that the devices may have been selling below some expectations. The person asked not to be identified discussing private strategy changes. Since then, Apple has embarked on a series of aggressive trade-in offers that have temporarily reduced the cost of some of its latest iPhones, a rare step for a company that's been raising device prices in recent years to lift revenue and profit.
Apple spokeswoman Trudy Muller declined to comment.
On Sunday evening, Apple added a new banner to the top of its website advertising the iPhone XR for $449 (€394), $300 (€263) less than its official sticker price. The deal requires customers to trade in an iPhone 7 Plus.
Apple has lost about a fifth of its market value since the start of October on signs of waning iPhone demand. On Monday, supplier Cirrus Logic cut its holiday quarter sales forecast 16pc due to "recent weakness in the smartphone market."