The iPhone 14 Plus has FAILED – Here’s Why…

Apple really seems to have a hard time selling its “other” iPhone. First the Mini failed, and now it looks like the iPhone 14 Plus will too

When Apple fails, it still manages to sell more phones than most other companies. Demand for the iPhone 14 Plus – outside of China, at least – is said to be flat which is a nice way of saying NO ONE is buying this phone.

In a bid to save face (and money), Apple has reportedly dialed-back production of the iPhone 14 Plus by a massive 40%. Industry sources claim Apple is forecasting 10 million iPhone 14 Plus shipments for 2022, a relatively small number compared to Apple’s usual volume.

What’s even more interesting is that demand for Apple’s most expensive iPhone models, the iPhone 14 Pro and iPhone 14 Pro Max, appears to be outpacing demand for its cheaper, entry-level model, the iPhone 14. But given the difference between the iPhone 14 versus the iPhone 13, that’s hardly surprising.

Apple’s Entry-Level iPhone 14 Models Have Failed

The iPhone 14 – at least, the base models – were never going to set the earth ablaze. As updates go, both phones were about as incremental as can be – even by Apple’s market-leading standards in this regard.

Apple used the same CPU in its iPhone 14/14 Plus models as last year’s iPhone 13 Pro Max, and while it did increase the RAM and slightly tweak the cameras, most users have wisely decided to give both phones a miss and wait for 2023’s iPhone 15. Probably a smart move.

Analyst Ming-Chi Kuo recently said that Apple’s product segmentation strategy for standard models has failed this year, following worse ‌iPhone 14‌ Plus pre-order results than the third-generation iPhone SE and the ‌‌iPhone 13‌‌ mini. Apple is believed to have shelved plans to increase production of both the ‌iPhone 14‌ and ‌iPhone 14‌ Plus in response.


Why The iPhone 14 Plus Failed

iPhone 14 Plus SalesPin

The problem with the iPhone 14 Plus, besides the fact it is about as exciting as a unfavored, room temperature porridge, is that Apple got its pricing all muddled. It retails for $899. For $200 more, you can get the iPhone 14 Pro, a vastly superior phone with lots of updates and changes that include an improved camera module, a new CPU, and Apple’s Dynamic Island and Always-On display.

Or, you could save yourself a fortune and just get the iPhone 13 Pro Max or iPhone 13 Pro. You really wouldn’t be missing out on anything. Me? I’m an iPhone 13 user and I am holding fast until the iPhone 15 drops in 2023.

At this point, after seeing which features trickle-down to the base models, I’ll make a decision about going Pro or sticking with the base model options.

Plus, if you’re going to spend $800 on a phone, what’s another $200? It’s a drop in the ocean. And for that extra $200 you get WAY more phone, better performance, future-proofing, and more performance and power across the board – as no brainer’s go, this one is up there with the best of them.

Apple should have spotted this in development; I honestly cannot believe it didn’t – the split in this year’s range is just a mess. Even more so when you factor in just how cheap Google’s new Pixel 7 Pro is in comparison – spoiler: it’s the same price as the iPhone 14 Plus.

Will There Be An iPhone 15 Plus?

Given the iPhone 14 Plus’ failings, you’d think Apple would can the iPhone 15 Plus and chalk it up to bad planning and design. But it’s not quite as simple as this.

You see, Apple plans its launches well in advance of when the phones actually launch – usually 18 months, at the minimum – and it does this to ensure it has adequate supply chain manoeuvrability when the time comes to drop new hardware.

Apple is likely already committed to the iPhone 15 Plus, just as it was tied to releasing the iPhone 13 Mini despite the iPhone 12 mini’s poor performance. And this means, regardless of sales, the iPhone 15 Plus will launch in 2023 and likely suffer a similar fate to that of the phone it replaced, meaning the iPhone 14 Plus AND Apple’s Mini series.

Once the iPhone 15 launch is out of the way, Apple will then need to decide on a new strategy for its iPhone line-up in 2024 and beyond. Might it switch to a three-model release with the iPhone 16, iPhone 16 Pro, and iPhone 16 Ultra? It’s possible and it makes more sense, from the perspective of users, than its current, muddled line-up.

At it stands, demand seems to dictate that Apple only really needs three phones: its base model, its Pro model, and perhaps an ultra-premium model in the form of the iPhone 15 Ultra. Perhaps this was the plan all along; bore its users to death with dull updates, then surprise everybody in 2023 with a massively updated lineup of new phones?

Something’s got to change, though, whichever you slice it: the iPhone 14 series is needlessly bloated with unnecessary phones. The Plus is almost certain to go the way of the Mini, and most people seem to agree that this will pave the way for the iPhone 15 Ultra – and maybe even the iPhone Flip

Richard Goodwin

Richard Goodwin is a leading UK technology journalist with a focus on consumer tech trends and data security. Renowned for his insightful analysis, Richard has contributed to Sky News, BBC Radio 4, BBC Radio 2, and CNBC, making complex tech issues accessible to a broad audience.

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