Consumers update their iPhones at a fairly aggressive pace: when a contract expires, usually within two years, most consumers immediately upgrade to another one. But that’s not the way people upgrade their iPhones… in fact, it’s looking like iPads might be, for most consumers, more like Macs, which are replaced every 2-4 years.
It makes sense, if you think about it. Not only are our iPhones the computers most of us always have with us and use most, but if you’re on a two-year contract, there’s no real incentive not to upgrade at the end of the cycle: you’re still paying a monthly bill that assumes a subsidy price built into it.
According to the CIRP, authors of the report: “We think Apple would prefer the iPad become a big iPhone. We suspect, though, based on recent CIRP data about how buyers use them, that it’s as much like a Mac, TV, or iPod, with less frequent replacement.”