FORTUNE -- It takes stubborn company to resist the pressure Apple (AAPL) has been under for the last six months to lower the price of the iPhone 5C -- the one Wall Street expected to be C for "cheap" or "China" but which turned out to be neither. The day the price was announced, analysts across the board expressed their shock and disappointment, and traders knocked $40 billion off the company's market capitalization.
"This chart shows the iPhone 5C has bombed in China," read the headline that TechAsia ran last week above the attached chart. Even Tim Cook, Apple's CEO, admitted in January that he had misjudged demand.
"The fact is, Apple doesn't know what demand for the iPhone 5C will be in developing markets," Piper Jaffray's Gene Munster told me the day the iPhone 5C was unveiled -- right after he'd been briefed by Apple execs. Rather than give away more margin than necessary, he said, the company decided to start high and make adjustments later.
Six months later -- nearly to the day -- Apple has started making those adjustments. On its U.K. website, where an unsubsidized 16GB iPhone 5C goes for £469 ($779), a new 8GB model showed up Tuesday morning at a new price point: £429, or £40 ($67) cheaper.
As of 6 a.m. ET, the 8GB model hadn't popped up on Apple's U.S. website, where the 16GB iPhone 5C sells for $549 unsubsidized and $99 with a two-year contract. We might have a few hours to run a quick poll.
UPDATE: Apple refreshed its U.S. website before 9 a.m. Tuesday with a change in the iPad line-up (dropping the iPad 2 and putting in its place at the $399 price point a newly-tweaked 9.7-inch iPad with Retina). No sign yet of an 8GB iPhone 5C.
UPDATE 2: We have winner! Apple PR has confirmed that the 8GB model is available in the U.K., France, Germany, Australia and China. It is not, for the time being, available in the U.S. I've closed down the poll with 96 readers (26%) having guessed correctly. Two points: 1) Reports from domestic carriers suggest that the iPhone 5C is selling well in the U.S. and 2) I wouldn't wish a skimpy 8GB on anyone I thought might want to put music, photos or serious apps on an iPhone.
Kantar reports that nearly half were switching from other brands, chiefly Samsung and LG.
FORTUNE -- When Apple (AAPL) released a pair of new iPhones in September, demand was so lopsided in favor of the more expensive (by $100) model that many on Wall Street assumed that the pricing on the cheaper iPhone was some kind of blunder.
The iPhone 5S continues to outsell its more moderately price sibling -- by three to one in MOREPhilip Elmer-DeWitt - Dec 2, 2013 2:05 PM ET
Who says Apple priced itself out of the Indian smartphone market?
FORTUNE -- Apple (AAPL) launched the iPhone 5S and iPhone 5C in India three weeks ago -- a month and a half after their initial release in 11 other countries.
Early reports suggested that the new iPhones were off to a strong start, but it wasn't until I read The Indian Express' follow-up Monday that I thought to see if there were MOREPhilip Elmer-DeWitt - Nov 26, 2013 11:07 AM ET
Apple trimmed iPhone 5C orders 50%. Or was it 20%? Or 35%?
FORTUNE -- I knew there was a reason I didn't comment on the several reports of iPhone production order changes -- up and down -- that came across the business wires last week. (See here, here and here.)
But it wasn't until I read the MacDailyNews' take on the issue Saturday that I could articulate why.
"We're going to make this so MOREPhilip Elmer-DeWitt - Oct 20, 2013 4:36 PM ET
Dueling reports Monday on how much better the high-end model is doing than the low.
FORTUNE -- When the iPhone 5S and 5C went on sale last month, there was every reason to suspect that the more advanced 5S would draw more early adopters to the Apple (AAPL) stores than the 5C. And indeed, by one launch-day line count, the iPhone 5S buyers outnumbered 5C buyers that first day by 20 MOREPhilip Elmer-DeWitt - Oct 14, 2013 8:40 AM ET
Only Samsung's Galaxy S4 is outselling the iPhone 5C, and only at Verizon and T-Mobile.
FORTUNE -- "Our September surveys indicated very strong initial sales and back orders for the iPhone 5s and strong iPhone 5c sales at the four tier-1 U.S. carriers and also in international markets."
So wrote Canaccord Genuity's T. Michael Walkley in a note to clients Friday that included the first published chart of where Apple's (AAPL) new MOREPhilip Elmer-DeWitt - Oct 6, 2013 6:10 AM ET
BTIG's Walter Piecyk set out to test the idea that there's a glut of the lower-priced iPhone
FORTUNE -- The received wisdom on Wall Street is that Apple (AAPL) went overboard on the iPhone 5C -- in both price and production -- and that millions of unsold units are sitting in the warehouses of Verizon, AT&T, Sprint and the rest.
BTIG's Walter Piecyk set out to test that theory by calling a few stores. MOREPhilip Elmer-DeWitt - Sep 27, 2013 5:54 PM ET
A week after its release, the iPhone 5C has gained some ground on the more popular 5S.
FORTUNE -- The early preference for the iPhone 5S over the iPhone 5C has faded a bit in the week since their release, according to a report issued Friday by Localytics, a Boston-based mobile analytics firm.
As of Sept. 22 Apple (AAPL) was selling 3.4 units of the iPhone 5S for every 5C. By Sept. MOREPhilip Elmer-DeWitt - Sep 27, 2013 11:00 AM ET
72 hours after launch, the higher-price iPhone represents 78% of activations worldwide.
FORTUNE -- If Apple (AAPL) designed the lower-cost iPhone 5C with the billion-plus Chinese mobile phone market in mind -- as many analysts opined -- someone forgot to tell the Chinese.
Of the nine countries included in the launch of Apple's new iPhones Friday, none showed less interest in the iPhone 5C than China.
A Localytics survey of 20 million iPhones conducted MOREPhilip Elmer-DeWitt - Sep 24, 2013 8:38 AM ET
The year of the iPhone 5s and 5c feels like an interim period of incremental -- though impressive -- upgrades.JP Mangalindan, Writer - Sep 23, 2013 10:51 AM ET
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