iPhone X Survey Shows Increased Intent to Upgrade & Interest in AR

Last week, we surveyed 502 people in the US regarding their interest in purchasing the iPhone X, expected to launch this fall. Among the 234 iPhone owners we surveyed, 23% intend to upgrade to iPhone X, which compares to 15% that intended to upgrade to an iPhone 7 prior to its launch. The iPhone 7 data point is based on a survey we conducted while at Piper Jaffray in July 2016.

We conducted our most recent survey roughly six months ahead of the iPhone X release. Last year, the survey was done two months ahead of the iPhone 7 release. As we get closer to launch, the rumor mill can positively or negatively impact excitement about buying. If the rumors live up to the early hype, interest will likely increase; if they don’t, interest may decrease. The higher intent to purchase the iPhone X likely also reflects the increasing popularity of the iPhone Upgrade Program. While it’s still early, interest in upgrading to the iPhone X appears to be meaningfully higher than upgrade interest was for the iPhone 7.

Interest in augmented reality (AR) features is high. Among those that plan to purchase the iPhone X, 26% indicate an interest in AR features compared to 16% among those that don’t plan to purchase the iPhone X. This could be driven by the simple correlation between early adopters of iPhones and early adopters of new technology, like AR.

AR interest is higher with millennials. Not surprisingly, the 18-29 year old cohort has the highest interest in AR at 34%. Among older age groups, interest in AR declines. This points to the willingness of millennials to be early adopters. We believe younger users are the key to widespread AR adoption over the next decade.

AR interest is higher among men. As for interest by gender, our survey indicates that 29% of males are interested in AR features compared to 23% of females.

We’re looking forward to seeing how Apple markets the AR-related features in the iPhone. And we’ll be looking for signs of these new features in iOS 11 when it’s introduced at WWDC in early June. Those features, along with the company’s ability to market their utility to consumers, will drive demand for the new device and push the AR theme forward, potentially in a very big way.

Disclaimer: We actively write about the themes in which we invest: artificial intelligence, robotics, virtual reality, and augmented reality. From time to time, we will write about companies that are in our portfolio.  Content on this site including opinions on specific themes in technology, market estimates, and estimates and commentary regarding publicly traded or private companies is not intended for use in making investment decisions. We hold no obligation to update any of our projections. We express no warranties about any estimates or opinions we make.