Previously, the iPhone XR 64GB with a 24-month contract would have cost NTT DOCOMO customers ¥36,000 JPY (over $315 USD). Now the device will ring in at ¥24,000 (roughly $211), not including mandatory contract fees. Many new NTT DOCOMO customers will be able to snag an entire iPhone XR 64GB contract package for ¥7000 yen ($62) per month.
NTT DOCOMO is one of the biggest mobile carriers in Japan and its serves more than 53 million customers. It is believed that its competitors, SoftBank Group and KDDI, will also begin to offer iPhone XR at a reduced price. There is currently no word on whether the iPhone XS and iPhone XS Max will also be available for a discount.
Apple’s 2018 iPhone models have reportedly not been as popular as previous devices. Earlier this month, Apple allegedly told three different iPhone XR suppliers to reduce their expectations for orders. Apple also told its main suppliers, Foxconn and Pegatron, to stop any additional iPhone XR production lines. Apple has supposedly decreased production orders for the iPhone XS and iPhone XS Max as well. Overall, the iPhone XS Max has been outselling both the iPhone XS and iPhone XR, despite the higher price tag. Altogether, however, reception has been lukewarm.
Other iPhone models are also selling like hotcakes. Japanese customers are reportedly purchasing large quantities of the iPhone 8 and iPhone 8 Plus. Nearly 50% of Japanese smartphone users choose Apple devices.
Price is probably the biggest deterrent for Apple customers. The iPhone XS is aimed at those who want a more luxurious device, but its less expensive counterparts are still quite pricey. The newest iPhone models start at $749 USD and go up to $1,449. In contrast, you could nab a 64GB iPhone 8 Plus for $699.
The iPhone XR is the least expensive 2018 model, but its repairs could also potentially be quite expensive. If you do not have AppleCare+, a single screen replacement will cost $199. Many consumers simply do not buy Apple CEO Tim Cook’s argument that the hefty price tag is justified. Customers overall are opting for the older, less expensive models and this preference is currently reflected in the Japanese market.