Why Mid-Range smartphones are the new Flagships.

by birtanpublished on August 16, 2020

Do you have any idea what the best-selling smartphone in early 2019 was maybe the Samsung Galaxy S 10 or maybe the one plus seven Pro actually no and they were far from it the number one spot was taken by the $150 Samsung Galaxy a 10 number 2 was another one of

Their mid-range phones the a 50 and in fact in this entire list of top selling Android phones not a single one was a flagship this might be a bit of a surprise the flagships are the phones you always hear about first they're the

Ones you see all the flashy reviews about but this mid-range category has exploded in recent years and what seem more interesting is where it's going oh yeah and a huge thanks to sir shark VPN for being the sponsor of this video so

Just for some context when small phones began there were just flagships each company had a 400 to 500 dollar offering with all the bells and whistles and the game was all about trying to make the best iPhone killer over the years though

These flagships got more expensive and in no uncertain terms that $500 very quickly became 700 and soon enough a thousand and beyond as Android became more capable though and the chipsets more powerful the budget smartphone

Became possible companies were able to sell something for 100 to 200 dollars which could just about get stuff done there were noticeable compromises but just the concept of being able to use Facebook whatsapp the Android Market

Having only invested $100 was really cool but then over the coming years we start to notice something flagship phones were getting more expensive yes but budget phones were different they appeal to the kind of consumer who is

More sensitive to price changes and so companies couldn't raise prices without losing sales this created a massive gap enter the mid-range smartphone you might have been surprised when I told you earlier that the best selling phones now

Are consistently mid ranges because here on YouTube and on the Internet in general everyone talks about the flagships well the reason for that is frankly flagships are interesting every tech head wants to learn about all the

Cool new camera features Samsung's going to release on their next Galaxy flagship but you'll probably only learn about their mid-range Ferns if you are specifically planning on buying them flagship Tsar where the majority of a

Company's research and investments go but I've got five reasons why even then people are switching from these flagships to mid ranges number five China let's say it's Samsung was the only smart phone company out there they

Could build their mid-range phones such that they are consistently noticeably slower than their flagships they could make each application open 20% slower they could make each photo taken consistently lower resolution and

By doing this encourage people to spend $1000 on the top tier model but in the last 5 years Chinese phones have gotten good runs like oneplus real me show me they're making small phones with practically flagship grade hardware at

Mid-range prices and as they become more available around the world Samsung's only choice if they don't want to miss out on this lucrative mid-range market is to make really good mid-range phones but that leads on to the next problem

For flagships there are two primary types of competition in markets the flagship market is governed by feature-based competition firms differentiate themselves by making new features what

Are essentially optional extras things like super high resolution cameras or curved displays things that tech nerds like me love to play around with but we pay a big price premium to do so the mid-range market though in part because

Of this pressure from China runs on price competition the primary objective of these smartphones has become to pack all the main features people need into the lowest possible price and this is bad for companies but great for

Consumers I mentioned earlier that flagship Sarwar a lot of companies resources and investments go to create new features but the mid-range is where a lot of those features end up a year later anyways for $400 now a company is

Expected to use an upper mid-range processor a double and usually triple camera setter offering an experience that is not just close but often indistinguishable from flagship and that brings me on to number

Three just before which if you're enjoying this video a sub would be amazing anyways with technology in most cases we face diminishing returns an extra 30% power does not make your phone at 30% more useful during me wrong there

Are plenty of niches that would love to have a phone that's 10 times as powerful mobile gamers for example or amateur photographers who are considering ditching their DSLR camera but for the vast majority of people the small

Vernonia exists as a portal for applications the ability to watch a Netflix show listen to music or just flick through Instagram these users will gain almost nothing from a 20 core CPU or a 200 megapixel hexa camera setup

When smartphones were in their early stages each improvement for example an increase in display resolution or storage speed would have made these simple tasks new to be better but to an average consumer

The improvement is becoming less and less noticeable each year it is worth making a differentiation that in the professional space more speed is always better that's why products like B $50,000 Mac

Pro exist but the smartphone is not that professionals use professional equipment and by its very mainstream nature smartphones running on smartphone operating systems are built around the mass-market they're not going to replace

These pro tools number two flagships can be worse and by this I'm not saying that a $1000 phone is gonna be worse than a 4 to $500 phone from the same company but there are some characteristics that flagships tend to have they aren't for

Everybody they've almost consistently ditched the headphone jack for example and their displays are often larger and curved which I can manage but only for some people will make the device harder to use in the pursuit of more glamorous

Form factors to create a better first impression flagships can end up creating more inconveniences having a display that fills the entire front of your phone looks great but has so far come at the cost of extra thickness and a

Motorized camera that adds fragility and you have to wait for each time you want to face unlock and now arguably one of the most important things that has enabled this mid-range rise to prominence is actually a psychological

Trick cameo this gets pretty deep from the very beginning of humanity the very reason we've managed to survive as a species is because we are risk averse this means we like siding with the safer option is the reason most people would

Prefer to keep their money in a safe bank account as opposed to investing in risky shares even if on average they'd be earning more money doing the latter and this risk aversion translates to our day to day decision making we shy away

From extreme options because we feel like if we go down the middle we can never go too far wrong and we like to be in the majority humans get satisfaction when we do something that is reciprocated by everyone else so we have

A tendency to pick the option that we also think other people will pick and so I mentioned it was gonna get pretty deep but the way this translates to phones is we tell ourselves we don't want the cheapest option because the quality

Won't be good enough and that we don't need the most expensive that's a luxury we feel at ease when presented with the middle ground especially in this smartphone market because of how little the compromise is with mid-range phones

But there's more you might have that our minds are inherently lazy it's true I think a better way of putting it though is that our minds are efficient they don't like to waste time and energy thinking about things when it can be

Avoided and so oftentimes when faced with complex problems which for a lot of people picking a smart phone can be we pick the one that will minimize the time taken to decide middle makes this very easy for us now I do just want to add

One caveat into this whole video technological progress is not a slope it's a staircase we have periods of relative stagnation where we see continuous little improvements followed by a big shift another period of small

Improvements and then another big thing and the way I see it working is this every time there's a new breakthrough flagship phones will pull ahead because they have early access to these features but then as this technology becomes more

Mature the mid-range will catch up because global competition will force it to we've seen this happen when the cellphone turned into the smartphone and we might be about to see it again with the foldable phone there is also the

Other slightly more gloomy prediction of the future which suggests that the smartphone market is gonna plateau in this scenario there is no big change and as the years go on phones just start looking like identical slabs of glass

And shopping for a smartphone it becomes a bit like shopping for a home appliance less about upgrading to new and exciting features more about getting a task done but personally I trust that companies will continue to excite us that

Flagships will continue leaping ahead and new breakthroughs will happen we might be near the end of the plus brick form factor but this technology itself is just getting started surf shark VPN is pretty crazy value you

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