Today Apple made a number of announcements, including the year's major update to the iPhone in the form of the iPhone 7, and the second generation Apple Watch, known as the Apple Watch Series 2. One of the smaller announcements of the day was a shake-up of the prices and storage tiers on iOS devices. To a large extent this addresses one of the major criticisms of Apple's devices, which is that they've kept the base model at 16GB of internal storage for much longer than competing devices. I've compiled the changes that Apple has made to storage capacities and pricing across the iPhone and iPads lines in the charts below:

Apple iPhone Line
  Apple iPhone SE Apple iPhone 6s Apple iPhone 6s Plus
Old Price $399/499
New Price $399/449
Apple iPad Line
  Apple iPad Mini 2 Apple iPad Mini 4 Apple iPad Air 2 Apple iPad Pro 9.7 Apple iPad Pro 12.9
Old Price $269
$399/499 16/64GB $599/749/899
New Price $269

There are two parts to the changes made today. The first is that Apple has eliminated the 16GB storage tier on every device except for the iPhone SE. It would have been really great to see 16GB removed from the whole lineup, but I suspect that the iPhone SE's margins are already lower than Apple would like. However, to keep the upgrade pricing in line with the other devices, the 64GB iPhone SE now only has a $50 premium over the 16GB model. On every other device, the 16GB storage tier has become 32GB, and 64GB has become 128GB, with prices being kept at the same point. 

The second change pertains to the iPad Pro devices, where the storage already started at 32GB and had upgrade tiers of 128GB and 256GB which each required an additional $150 on top of the starting price. With these Apple has maintained the same base price and storage tiers, but the upgrade price has dropped to $100 to bring it in line with the rest of Apple's iOS devices.

While none of these changes are anything groundbreaking, it does address a longstanding problem with the iPhone and iPad. Even with cloud storage for music and other media, with new features like Live Photos and 4K video recording, the storage pressure on iOS devices has become much greater while storage capacities remained constant. Dropping prices on iPad storage upgrades also makes the larger capacity models more accessible, and bumping up capacities on the iPad Air 2 and iPad Mini 4 make them more useful as media devices.

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  • Donkey2008 - Saturday, September 10, 2016 - link

    The "massive environmental damage"? That honestly almost made me spit out my coffee with laughter, but whatever you say hipster.
  • Deelron - Thursday, September 8, 2016 - link

    "thinking about dropping subsidizing new phones and making people PAY for the phone THEM SELF...."

    You may be a year or two behind, most "subsidies" now are 24 payments at 0% interest.
  • Qasar - Thursday, September 8, 2016 - link


    i meant.. paying for the phone outright at the time you get it.. in way.. making payments is still subsidizing...
  • bENDEJO - Friday, September 9, 2016 - link

    "making payments is still subsidizing".
    No, it isn't. Once the phone is payed off, the payment goes away, and you're only paying for the service. Before, with contracts, the price of the service absorbed the cost of the device, and the bill didn't go down once the phone was paid off.
    And you must have good enough credit to qualify for the payment plans. By your definition, any loan would be considered a subsidy - house, car, business, solar...
    Do you consider your car loan a subsidy? I think not.
  • Donkey2008 - Saturday, September 10, 2016 - link

    The funny thing is I am still on a grandfathered unlimited data plan with AT&T and my plan is still cheaper than the family-share plans that AT&T keeps insisting are cheaper because "you don't pay for the phone in your plan anymore".

    I pay exactly $95 + tax for unlimited data and text ($40 talk, $35 unlimited data, $20 unlimited text). The ONLY thing I lose is the ability to tether (although strangely I can tether to my Ram truck and create a hot spot).

    The family share plans they tried to get me to switch to (unlimited text and talk):
    6 GB - $100
    10 GB - $120
    16 GB - $130

    So basically the carriers are full of cow poo poo IMO as far a single line customers. I guess if you had a family with 3-4 phones it makes sense, but again you are limited by the data.
  • Donkey2008 - Saturday, September 10, 2016 - link

    Get a better job maybe?
  • Brandon Chester - Wednesday, September 7, 2016 - link

    Good catch. I keep getting pushed back onto the Canadian site so I didn't see it. I've updated the chart.
  • pugster - Thursday, September 8, 2016 - link

    There will be never a shortage of isheeps out there buying iphones. As for me, the costliest new phone that I brought recently was the Alcatel Onetouch idol 3 for about $200 when it was on sale. Not going to buy in the hype of overpriced phones anymore.
  • Marlowe - Thursday, September 8, 2016 - link

    Just like that, Apple dropped the price of the iPhone 6s by $200 or ~24% for the same storage. Today you get 128GB for the same price as 16GB yesterday. Sounds sweet. Tells you something about their insane profit margin.
  • bENDEJO - Friday, September 9, 2016 - link

    Yep, just shows you how much consumers were getting gouged for years.

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