Apple is experimenting with iPhone marketing strategies it rarely uses such as discount promotions via generous device buyback terms to help goose sales of its flagship product.
Company executives moved some marketing staff from other projects to work on bolstering sales of the latest handsets in October, about a month after the iPhone XS went on sale and in the days around the launch of the iPhone XR, according to a person familiar with the situation. This person described it as a "fire drill," and a possible admission that the devices may have been selling below some expectations. The person asked not to be identified discussing private strategy changes.
Since then, Apple has embarked on a series of aggressive trade-in offers that have temporarily reduced the cost of some of its latest iPhones, a rare step for a company that's been raising device prices in recent years to lift revenue and profit. Apple spokeswoman Trudy Muller declined to comment.