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What does your smartphone say about you and your financial status?

Published: Friday, June 27 2014 4:35 p.m. MDT

Instagram is demonstrated on an iPhone Monday, April 9, 2012, in New York. iPhone or Android? The answer may not be as clear as it once was. And it may not be about style, but rather your economic status.

Karly Domb Sadof, Associated Press

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OK, so here’s a question you probably hear everyday — iPhone or Android?

Before you answer, just know your preference may say something about you and your economic status.

For one, Android phones are for the poor. Business Insider’s Jim Edwards reported Friday that Android phones are being marketed to poorer people across the world, mainly because Google is targeting the lower-income market for its sales.

For example, Google just launched Android One in India, which is part of a developing world, Edwards wrote.

“Remember, both companies (Apple and Android) are seeking to create user-bases composed of hundreds of millions or billions of people,” Edwards wrote. “There are fewer than 1 billion people in the U.S. and Europe, but more than double that number in India, China and the rest of the developing world.”

This new AndroidOne development process is a way to make cheaper smartphones that poorer people can buy, while also giving those users a similar experience to those who buy a more expensive phone, wrote Leo Mirani for Quartz.

Right now, many people are using cheaper smartphones for basic functions, with the occasions to Web surf when there’s WiFi, Mirani wrote.

“So it makes sense that Google wants these phones to improve,” Mirani wrote. “It’s all very well getting millions of first-time smartphone owners onto Android but there seems little point — for Google’s business empire — if those people aren’t spending money in Google’s multifarious stores or spending their time searching for stuff (and viewing ads) on Google services.

It’s also a defensive move by Google, Mirani wrote. Android wants to beat out Windows to reach the poorer smartphones users, and it wants to add structure to its otherwise scattered system of phones, in which many phones use Android software but aren’t necessarily the same style.

But Apple could be reaching into that poorer market, too. WalMart announced Friday that it would be cutting the prices of its iPhone 5c models from $149 or $49 to $99 or $29, USA Today reported. This may be part of Apple's attempt to appeal to those who want a cheaper phone, or it may be WalMart’s latest move to ramp up sales on the iPhone model that hasn’t done very well, ABC News reported.

Overall, though, the slashing of iPhone prices is part of an ongoing movement by companies to offer customers a less expensive option for the iPhone.

“Phone makers, too, are making deals to stimulate the summer marketplace,” wrote Mike Snider for USA Today. “Last week, T-Mobile began offering seven-day free trials of the iPhone 5s. Consumers simply sign up on the service provider's website and T-Mobile will send out a phone for no money down. If you decide to return it to a T-Mobile store, you won't be charged.”

So, it looks like companies are moving toward a cheaper smartphone to attract customers.

Or maybe they’re getting ready for the ultra-cheap $25 smartphone from Mozilla.

Maybe.

Email: hscribner@deseretdigital.com

Twitter: @herbscribner

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