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Friday, March 2, 2018

"iPhones cost a lot more than Android phones"

This is yet another myth that I wanted to tackle. It...like most other myths...has some truth to it but is mostly false.

Let's take a look at T-Mobile's website for some phones they have for sale at the moment.

As of writing this, it is currently March 2, 2018 at 2:25 p.m. PST. Here is a screenshot from this moment from T-Mobile's website showing the most popular selection of phones.


Please disregard the smallest price values as those are not a true representation of the phone you are looking to purchase. This is dependent on the phone carrier you choose and will look differently for each one. We are focusing on the smaller number beside them, the full retail price of the phone.

There are some things we need to take note of before we directly compare prices.

The iPhone X was released on November 3, 2017. The iPhone 8 was released on September 22, 2017.

Meanwhile, the Samsung Galaxy S9 will be released on March 11, 2018.

The dates are important due to how new a product is. If you have ever been to a car dealership, you may understand how this is similar. A 2017 model car will be cheaper than a 2018 model car, even if you compare the same car with the exact same features, color, and mileage all because of that date. You may even notice that a base model 2018 car may be more expensive than a fully loaded model car from the year before in some rare cases too. The same is true for phones in an even more drastic way.

The other thing we have to notice is the storage and other features. The best thing to do is to compare the base model of the phone. In the Samsung Galaxy S9's case, this would be the 64 GB option, which seems to be the only option for the Plus and regular S9. In the iPhone's case, we'll start with the X. We have two options, those being the 64 GB and the 256 GB option. And in the iPhone 8's case, for both the 8 and the 8 Plus, we have 64 and 256 GB options as well.

Given the different screen dimensions, it would be unfair to, say, compare the Samsung Galaxy S9 Plus to that of the iPhone 8 or to compare the iPhone X 256 GB to the Samsung Galaxy S9 Plus at 64 GB.

The most fair way to do this is to get similar dimensions and storage sizes. In this case, since the S9 only comes in 64 GB, we will have to compare the Samsung Galaxy S9 64 GB to the iPhone 8 64 GB and the Samsung Galaxy S9 Plus 64 GB to the iPhone 8 Plus 64 GB. I know that Samsung does do promotions at times for a free 256 GB SD card and they do have an option for removable storage, but again, we are only comparing what is given to you at time of checkout without any added bonuses.


  • Samsung Galaxy S9 at 64 GB will start at $720.00 at 5.8 inch screen size.
  • iPhone 8 at 64 GB starts at $699.99 with a 4.7 inch screen size. On release, its full price was $700, according to Business Insider just before the actual release date.
Between these two, you can see that the Samsung Galaxy S9 is more expensive by about $20.01. You do need to take this at these being prices for my location and not including tax. Still, the prices will fluctuate around the same for anywhere else in the world and will have just as much of a difference with tax included.

  • Samsung Galaxy S9 Plus at 64 GB will start at $840.00 at 6.2 inch screen size.
  • iPhone 8 Plus at 64 GB starts at $799.99 with a 5.5 inch screen size. On release, its full price was $800, according to Business Insider just before the actual release date.
  • iPhone X at 64 GB starts at $999.99 with a 5.8 inch screen size.
Again, we see a similar pattern here. The Samsung Galaxy S9 Plus is more expensive than the iPhone 8 Plus by about $40.01.

However, there is an important piece to note in all of these comparisons which is the screen size. The iPhone X is at 5.8 inches in screen size which is much more comparable to the Samsung Galaxy S9 at 5.8 inches in screen size as well.

To be completely fair, it is best to judge these two prices since they are so very similar in just about every area. With that, we see a price difference of $279.99 where the iPhone X is the more expensive option.

It is very difficult to get a good idea of how to gauge this "Who is more expensive?" because of so many different features and differences that balance each other out. Where iPhone shines, Galaxy may not and where Galaxy shines, iPhone may not as well. And you do have overlap where each share equal shines in certain areas or have decreases in both. A lot of this is also relative, such as one person liking a bigger device whereas another person not liking a bigger device.

But back to the topic at hand, are iPhones more expensive than Android devices? As I said before, there is truth to this and there is a false part to it as well.

As we saw through our comparison, it looked as if Galaxy was more expensive than iPhone until we compared screen sizes and noticed that the one with the more comparable screen size was more expensive, that being the iPhone X even though it is considered a much higher end version than the 8 or 8 Plus. Through that, one could make the (not completely true) argument that iPhones are less expensive than Galaxy's.

Another important point to make here is that you cannot go based on numbers given by the manufacturer. In this case, we are dealing with an iPhone 8 and iPhone X (pronounced 10) and a Galaxy S9. Some people would say it is unfair because it is one number behind, but in actuality, this is what is the generation. We are comparing phones from the same generation and Samsung and Apple do not share the same time frame for generations so it makes this comparison a little more complicated, hence why I added the link citing how much the iPhones were when released almost 6 months ago.

To be truthful, it's not so black and white and it is clear why that is based on what I have written above.

Another thing to note is that this is just one Android device and there are many more out there. But I chose Galaxy S9 because it is what is known as a flagship phone just like the iPhones are. Flagship models are basically the luxury brand of the cell phone market.

It would be like comparing a Lamborghini to a Ferrari. We all know this is a comparable scenario for most of their vehicles due to similar pricing and performance. Whereas we would consider a comparison between a Ford Fiesta and a Ferrari California to be ludicrous.

Most Android phones sold on the market are not flagship phones. But if you get the average of all Android phones out there and compare it to the average price of all available iPhone models, you would see iPhone being more expensive because you are lumping in lower end phones that can sometimes cost between $20 and $150 to devices that cost almost $1,000.

The conclusion of all this is that there are situations where iPhones can be more expensive than Android devices but there are also Android devices that are more expensive than iPhones and it's a very complicated matter that cannot be boiled down to a single sentence.

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