With the iPhone 5 release day bearing down on us, it’s clear that even as Apple prepares to release a fifth iPhone, shoppers can’t wait.
Nearly 75% of the almost a thousand iPhone shoppers we asked about their purchase plans are planning to buy a new iPhone within the first month, and more than 50% plan to pre-order or wait in line on launch day. That’s before Apple has announced a single detail about the device.
We also heard from over 100 people who are planning to buy a smartphone, but who won’t be buying an iPhone 5.
We have it covered: from standing in line, to how much they will spend on accessories, to what phones they are replacing or would consider instead of the iPhone 5.
Our survey of 1,101 individuals found that over half (51.5%) plan to purchase their next phone within a month, and 23.3% plan to purchase within the next three months. With nearly 75% planning on purchasing a smartphone in the next 3 months there is a lot of interest in the iPhone 5 and on the very capable iPhone 5 competitors.
Apple will unveil the new iPhone, or iPhones, on October 4th at a, “Let’s Talk iPhone.” event at the company’s headquarters. The new iPhone might be called the iPhone 4S, or could mark a brand new device with the iPhone 5 label.
We expect to learn the iPhone 5 specs, release date and if the rumored Apple Assistant app will be a part of the new iPhone. Apple will also announce the iOS 5 release date. iOS 5 is a new version of the software that powers the iPhone, and brings over 200 new features.
iPhone 5 Buyers Can’t Wait
Over half of the iPhone 5 buyers plan to preorder or purchase the new iPhone on launch day. Of those who are waiting, money and contracts are the major issues preventing an upgrade on day one. Only 11% said that they are waiting for the lines to die down.
If Apple runs into iPhone shortages, almost half of survey respondents said that they would wait as long as it takes to get the new iPhone. A quarter said that they would wait a month before considering a non Apple phone, or waiting for next year’s iPhone.
Best Place to Buy an iPhone 5 on Launch Day
Apple Stores typically get the largest shipments of new Apple products, which is why 22% of buyers plan to line up there for an iPhone 5, but the busiest locations on iPhone 5 release day are likely to be your local Verizon, AT&T and Sprint stores.
If you want to avoid the crowds and score an iPhone 5 easily, you should look to order online as soon as possible, or purchase at an Electronics store like Best Buy or RadioShack, as only 6% of iPhone 5 buyers plan to go to stores like these. Stay tuned for more tips on how to get an iPhone 5 on release day.
Which Carrier Are You Buying the iPhone 5 On?
AT&T reamins the number one choice for the iPhone 5, thanks to the four-year iPhone exclusivity. Verizon is in second place with a third of the vote. If Apple announces a Sprint iPhone, 20% of respondents will choose Sprint.
While AT&T is a top choice, it is one of the biggest losers. Nearly 10% of those who will choose Sprint would be coming from AT&T, and 7% of those switching to Verizon are leaving AT&T.
Switching from AT&T to Verizon, or Verizon to AT&T isn’t ver popular. This is likely tied to the end of unlimited data plans for new customers on both carriers.
The bad news for Sprint is that 73% of those looking to buy an iPhone 5 already have Sprint service. This isn’t great news for Sprint. While some of this can be blamed on contracts, it could also be tied to many policy changes by the third place carrier.
iPhone 5 Buyers Love Accessories
iPhone 5 buyers plan to spend big on accessories. 30% are going to plunk down $30 to $50 for accessories and 34% will spend $50 to $100. Given the breadth of iPhone accessories, it’s no surprise that nearly 16% of iPhone 5 buyers plan to spend over $100 in accessories.
Unlike most Android, Windows Phone 7 and Blackberry devices, the iPhone accessory aftermarket is filled with all types of accessories. It wouldn’t be surprising if there were 10 iPhone accessories for every one Android phone accessory.
First Time Buyers Abound, Android Loses
First time iPhone buyers make up the majority of iPhone 5 buyers in our survey, with iPhone 4 owners taking second place. Less than 255 of these potential iPhone 5 buyers are upgrading from an iPhone 3GS or older. The frequent, almost annual, upgrades among many iPhone users allows Apple to sell iPhones to current customers on a regular basis.
Of those iPhone 5 buyers who are coming from another phone, almost half are leaving Android. This move suggests that early Android buyers may be dissatisfied with their experience.
This is important because many first time Android buyers are coming off of their first 2 year contract with the Motorola Droid or HTC Droid Eris. While Google has brought numerous improvements to the Android system and manufacturers have stepped up their game, it is hard to convey this to customers swept up by iPhone 5 hype.
Can the iPhone 5 Disappoint?
It looks like Apple can do no wrong with the iPhone. Only 25% of those who plan on purchasing an iPhone 5 would even consider another phone if the iPhone 5 doesn’t live up to expectations.
Of those respondents, only 1% would consider a BlackBerry and just 1.7% would look at a Windows Phone 7 device. If the iPhone 5 does disappoint, Android could be the biggest winner — especially with the Samsung Nexus Prime coming soon.
What Keep You From Buying an iPhone 5?
As it turns out, only 39% of those who responded could be prevented from buying an iPhone 5 for any reason.
So, what could stop a determined iPhone 5 buyer? Apple can avoid the biggest complaints by bringing at least one new feature to differentiate from the iPhone 4 and keeping price the same. We expect that Apple will add an Assistant App to the new iPhone, and will keep prices the same.
Data speeds and data plans are the other major issues that could keep users from purchasing an iPhone 5. The lack of 4G data connectivity was a big sticking point. Even though we have rumors that the iPhone 5 will support HSPA+, which AT&T likes to call 4G, this isn’t real 4G.
We haven’t heard of new data plans being tied to the upgrade on existing carriers, but for those who were thinking of switching carriers capped data is a major concern.
What Would You Give Up for an iPhone 5?
We already know that buyers want the iPhone 5, but how much do they really want the iPhone 5?
46% of respondents would give up dining out for a month to get an iPhone 5 on release day, 42% would pass on video games and 30% would go without TV.
Almost a quarter of respondents would give up sex for a month if promised an iPhone 5 on launch day.
What about Non-iPhone 5 Buyers?
Not everyone is purchasing an iPhone 5. While this is a small number in our survey, Android is the big winner, taking 64% of the upcoming smartphone purchases.
The biggest reasons that these buyers are avoiding the iPhone are Price, Platform and Carrier.
35% say that the iPhone is too expensive, something Apple may be addressing with the iPhone 4S. 26% of non iPhone buyers prefer another phone platform to iOS. 10% of this group is only passing because the iPhone isn’t available from their preferred wireless company.
Only 17% of non iPhone 5 buyers would wait in a line for their next phone. nearly 20% think that line waiting is another Apple exclusive, while the majority of these smartphone buyers would rather wait for a good deal. History proves that waiting is a good deal for Android buyers. Hot phones can drop in price by as much as $100 in just a few weeks, without any recourse for early adopters.