Since the release of the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus on 19 September, questions surrounding its durability have surfaced in online conversation. Unlike previous post-release iPhone issues (yellow iPhone 5 screen) the iPhone 6 Plus’s newfound flexibility is a phone accessory marketing dream. Traditionally, iPhone users have fallen within one of two camps: putting a case on it or keeping the iPhone in its true naked form and hoping that they never drop it. But news that the iPhone 6 Plus can be bent out of shape has caused a flurry of conversation on Twitter about whether the iPhone 6 Plus needs a case.
To understand the effect that the iPhone 6 Plus phone bending has had upon iPhone users, DataRank analyzed conversation on Twitter from 26 August 2014 to 24 September 2014. We took a sample of comments from Twitter to evaluate sentiment for iPhone 6 phone cases.
The announcement of the new iPhones on 9 September resulted in iPhone case mentions jumping 43% from the previous day. Since that day there has been a steady increase in conversation about iPhone cases, but mentions peaked on 21 September with over 24,000 tweets mentioning an iPhone case. The peak coincides with the first social media reactions to news of the iPhone 6 Plus’ bending ability. However, of those who mentioned an iPhone 6 case in the past 14 days, only 25% of tweets talked about needing a case to protect their phone from bending.
Hey @HabsGirlSWO the iPhone 6 and 6 plus bend easy in your pocket please get a case if you bought one of them— Justin Ramsden (@jramsden013) September 24, 2014
With these statistics we began to question just how many people get a phone case to protect their iPhone from damage, and how many purchase cases for decorative purposes. DataRank’s distributed crawler system collected 17,000 comments mentioning iPhone cases from 24 March 2014 to 24 September 2014. We collect data from a variety of sources including eCommerce sites, forums, blogs, and social media.
Battle of the Brands
When it comes to iPhone case brands the choice can be endless, with many companies vying to attract iPhone owners for various case features: protection, beauty, battery life and wallet/phone combo. We searched for the top brands and within the past 6 months, OtterBox iPhone cases were by far the most popular, garnering 22% of overall conversation. The next most popular brands were Speck, Mophie and LifeProof, who made up 5% of overall conversation.
76% of OtterBox case mentions were positive, with conversation evenly spread between the 18 - 44 year old age group. This suggests that iPhone owners of all ages are interested in protecting their phone from cracks, scrapes and scratches over aesthetic appeal when they purchase a case.
Traditional colors also appear to hold the greatest share in iPhone case conversation, with black cases collecting a 23% share of voice and white closely following with 17%. Of those who mentioned black iPhone cases, 38% also named OtterBox. From this data we have found that traditional protective cases are the most popular within online conversation.
iPhone owners appear to be very vocal about the price of their phone case, with 29% of total phone case conversation mentioning how much their iPhone case cost them.
The case I want for my phone is $80 situating this iPhone will be the death of my account everything's so expensive!— Ashley Jean Seaton (@Ashleey_Jeean) September 22, 2014
Females appear to be most critical about the price of iPhone cases, with 71% of females who mentioned price also stating how expensive iPhone cases are.