Apple sells lots of phones. While a new model comes out every year and loyal Apple customers will pay an arm and a leg for it, that's not the story in some emerging markets. Apple still actively manufacturers older models that it sells for heavily discounted prices. According to a recent report out of India, Apple is planning on selling its 2013 iPhone 5S in India for around $230.
India's population is young and has become more affluent and tech savvy. With help from considerable upgrades to India's wireless infrastructure, smartphone sales have grown by about 15% in the first quarter of this year. That's nearly 10% higher than the global average. Despite what it seems like from walking around in America, Google's Android still holds the lion's share of the smartphone market. This is especially true in emerging markets where they are able to sell very cheap phones to many first time phone owners.
While India's average household income is growing, it's still far below that in America. Because of this, Apple simply can't charge $700 for a smartphone there if they want them to sell. That being said, smartphone prices rose in India by about 3% last year which could indicate that consumers are looking for a more premium experience. This is the market Apple is hoping to capitalize on.
While $230 is very cheap compared to phone prices in the western world, that is still on the upper end of prices in the developing world. At that price point, Apple is still likely to make a profit, too. Thanks to their already massive margins and mature production techniques, they can produce the iPhone 5S for a remarkably low price.