We had a feeling that Apple was going to offer its iPhone 14 Pro Max this year even more expensive, and we were not mistaken, except on one point. The first classic smartphone over €2,000 on the market was not the iPhone Pro Max with 2TB of internal storage, but 1TB of space, since the firm ultimately chose not to offer more.
Other manufacturers like Samsung offer very powerful premium smartphones with 1 TB of storage space, but without reaching such a price. Samsung’s Galaxy S22 Ultra, for example, released in late February 2022, comes in a 1TB version for €1,549. Still €580 cheaper than the iPhone Pro Max 1 TB (€2,129).
Why Apple just launched the first “normal” smartphone over €2,000
To find another smartphone over €2,000, you have to either look at the ultra-limited special editions offered by certain manufacturers, or at other much more innovative products, such as Samsung’s Galaxy Z Fold 4 – a smartphone foldable whose 1TB variant is priced at €2,159 at the time of writing, a hair more expensive than the priciest of the latest iPhone Pro Max.
De facto, the price of the latest iPhone 14 is about 30% higher in Europe than in the United States. There are several reasons for this, but the main factor is clearly the deterioration of the international context, and the depreciation of the euro against the dollar. Not to mention the difficulties in the global supply chain which at the same time increase manufacturing costs.
It should also be noted that Apple displays tax-free prices in the United States: depending on the state in which you buy the smartphone, a sales tax, between 2.5% and 7.25% of the sale price applies. . 35 American states also impose an additional tax between 1% and 5% of the selling price. Obviously, even by adding this tax, we are still in 2022 on American prices that are significantly lower than European prices.
Apple is cheaper in the United States, because it is its most important market
Apple will never officially say in detail why there can be such price differences from market to market. But we can still conjecture one thing: historically the United States is the most important market for Apple, and it is likely that the firm, which recently held a market share of more than 50% there, is seeking to retain the favors its customers by artificially maintaining the lowest possible prices.
On top of that, Apple passes on customs duties since the firm imports its iPhones into the Eurozone. And some countries like France apply additional taxes. For example the private copy tax which applies according to the storage memory. Beyond 64 GB (which concerns all iPhone 14s this year), French consumers must pay an additional tax of €14 per device.
So many elements that increase the selling price in Europe. It should also be noted that Apple has always charged much higher prices than the competition for its storage options, whether on iPhones, iPads or Macs. Thus between an iPhone Pro Max 128 GB and the 256 GB variant the price difference is €130 (€0.96 per additional gigabyte between the two variants).
Apple has always been very expensive for its storage options
Between the 256 GB and 512 GB variant there is a difference of €260 (€1.02 per gigabyte). And between the 512 and 1 TB version, you have to pay a premium of €280 (€0.55 per gigabyte). On the Galaxy S22 Ultra, for comparison, there is more of a difference of €210 between the 128 and 256 GB version (€0.61 per additional gigabyte).
The 512GB S22 Ultra is $10 cheaper than the 256GB S22 Ultra at the time of this writing. And the additional 512 GB to go to the 1 TB variant cost €0.39 per unit. However, in both cases we are talking about the latest storage technologies available, even if Apple is integrating its storage system even further into the architecture of its devices.
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De facto, customers thus pay a premium for the firm’s research and development efforts, its proprietary technologies, but also its marketing strategy…