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Will the iPhone 3GS be Apple’s key to prepaid markets?

With the next iPhone on the horizon, all signs point to an imminent demise for the iPhone 3GS. Apple, however, has other plans. Apple’s aging third generation smartphone will live on as the company targets emerging markets not dominated by the iPhone 4S, AppleInsider reports, based on a note from Jefferies Analyst Peter Misek. But does the notion hold any weight? While Apple rules the higher-end, contract-fueled part of the smartphone market, the lower, emerging end is dominated by feature phones and less-advanced Android devices. This leaves Apple without a real contender in the low-end space. “Emerging,” in this case, refers to a market’s general potential for growth. Emerging markets are untapped ones, and, as a result, are the very kinds of markets that growth-focused companies are constantly looking it. One of the most significant emerging areas are prepaid markets where consumers are less likely to sign pricy two-year contracts. These types of consumers are more sensitive to price in general, which is why its key here to keep low the prices of off-contract phones. Currently $375, the off-contract iPhone 3GS is far, far north of an attractive, mass market price point. This is why Apple would likely push that price down to roughly $200, making the device the same purchase price as an on-contract iPhone 4S and double the price of an on-contract iPhone 4. (Apple already offers the 3GS for free in America with a two-year contract.) One problem, though, is age. Released in June 2009, the 3GS is at this point almost three years old. That may not seem too old, but smartphones age fast, and three years is basically decades in technology time. This means that, as cheap as a developing market 3GS would be, the device’s age would very rapidly show, especially as Apple transitions to the next version of iOS.

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With the next iPhone on the horizon, all signs point to an imminent demise for the iPhone 3GS. Apple, however, has other plans. Apple’s aging third generation smartphone will live on as the company targets emerging markets not dominated by the iPhone 4S, AppleInsider reports, based on a note from Jefferies Analyst Peter Misek.

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But does the notion hold any weight? While Apple rules the higher-end, contract-fueled part of the smartphone market, the lower, emerging end is dominated by feature phones and less-advanced Android devices. This leaves Apple without a real contender in the low-end space. “Emerging,” in this case, refers to a market’s general potential for growth. Emerging markets are untapped ones, and, as a result, are the very kinds of markets that growth-focused companies are constantly looking it. One of the most significant emerging areas are prepaid markets where consumers are less likely to sign pricy two-year contracts.

These types of consumers are more sensitive to price in general, which is why its key here to keep low the prices of off-contract phones. Currently $375, the off-contract iPhone 3GS is far, far north of an attractive, mass market price point. This is why Apple would likely push that price down to roughly $200, making the device the same purchase price as an on-contract iPhone 4S and double the price of an on-contract iPhone 4.

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Will the iPhone 3GS be Apple’s key to prepaid markets?

Myanmar

Digital Revolution and Repression in Myanmar and Thailand

Activists have also proactively published social media content in multiple languages using the hashtags #WhatsHappeningInMyanmar and #WhatsHappeningInThailand to boost coverage of events on the ground.

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By Karen Lee

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Following the February 1 coup, Myanmar’s netizens became the latest to join the #MilkTeaAlliance, an online collective of pro-democracy youth across Asia.

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Ecommerce

How will oil prices shape the Covid-19 recovery in emerging markets?

Oxford Business Group

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How will oil prices shape the Covid-19 recovery in emerging markets?
– After falling significantly in 2020, oil prices have returned to pre-pandemic levels
– The rise has been driven by OPEC+ production cuts and an improving economic climate
– Higher prices are likely to support a rebound in oil-producing emerging markets
– Further virus outbreaks or increased production would pose challenges to price stability

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A combination of continued production cuts and an increase in economic activity has prompted oil prices to return to pre-pandemic levels – a factor that will be crucial to the recovery of major oil-producing countries in the Middle East and Africa.

Brent crude prices rose above $60 a barrel in early February, the first time they had exceeded pre-Covid-19 values. They have since continued to rise, going above $66 a barrel on February 24.

The ongoing increase in oil prices, which have soared by 75% since November and around 26% since the beginning of the year, marks a dramatic change from last year.

Following the closure of many national borders and the implementation of travel-related restrictions to stop the spread of the virus, demand for oil slumped globally.

In the wake of the Saudi-Russia price war in early 2020, Brent crude prices fell from around $60 a barrel in February that year to two-decade lows of $20 a barrel in late April, as supply increased and demand plummeted. The value of WTI crude – the main benchmark for oil in the US – fell to record lows of around $40 a barrel last year on the back of a lack of storage space.

While global demand for oil remains low, one factor credited with reversing the trend is the decision to make significant cuts to oil production, which subsequently tightened global supplies.

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Tech

How the Rural-Urban Divide Plays Out on Digital Platforms

It is one thing for entrepreneurs, whether urban or rural, to create and operate an online store, as some digital platforms have made it relatively easy to manage an e-store – even by using just a smartphone.

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In the West, villages are emptying out due to the lack of economic opportunities. Consider Italy where, in a bid to attract newcomers, a handful of municipalities have turned to selling houses for €1.

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