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iPhone 15 could come as a hardware subscription, suggests rumor
iPhone leases might be rolled into Apple One subscriptions later this year
➡️ The Shortcut Skinny: iPhone 15 for rent
📱 An iPhone hardware subscription may bundle with Apple One plans this year
✨ This plan would not be tied to ownership, would instead be more of a lease
🤔 It was rumored to launch with iPhone 14; technical challenges have delayed it
💰 Hardware subscription is part of Apple’s push to offer other financial options
Apple has been rumored to be working on a subscription service distinct from its iPhone Upgrade Program (a functionally similar 12-24 month iPhone financing plan that emphasizes trading up every year or two), possibly to coincide with the iPhone 15 Pro Max release date later this year.
The new iPhone hardware subscription would allegedly be rolled into Apple One, its all-in-one services subscription package that includes Apple Music, Apple iCloud Plus, Apple Arcade, and more, according to reporting at Bloomberg (via TechRadar).
The subscription would let buyers upgrade to the next iPhone every year, and it was expected to launch with the iPhone 14 series but it never materialized. Gurman says the program is still to come, and launching it in September could help offset the iPhone 15 price, which could be particularly high for users if rumors of Apple plans to release iPhone Ultra are true (though that’s expected later, in 2024).
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Apple as a financial institution
This plan is part of an overall push the company has been making to become more of a financial institution in its own right, with other services on the way that include Apple Pay Later – a zero-interest, four-pay-over-six-weeks installment plan through Apple Pay – and a high-yield savings account tied to Apple Card (which was announced in October but hasn’t yet shown up).
Apple is reportedly working on an extended version of Apple Pay Later, too, called Apple Pay Monthly Installments. This would be a longer-term installment plan with interest.
That would be distinct from Apple Card Monthly Installments, which can be used to pay off Macs and iPhones with no-interest financing for Apple Card users.