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The iPhone 5: Who's buying?

  • Apple's latest iPhone is expected to debut Wednesday
  • Survey: Most buyers upgrading, Android owners curious
  • Potential buyers want longer battery life and more speed
The hotly anticipated iPhone 5 is expected to make its debut on September 12.

The hotly anticipated iPhone 5 is ready for its close-up with a public unveiling expected Wednesday. It’s safe to say the new phone will ring up huge sales for Apple. But who’s buying, when and why? And what features are they looking for?

According to tech deal site TechBargains, the potential market for the iPhone 5 is huge, but not everyone will be rushing right out to buy it.

In a new survey, TechBargains found 45% of people plan to buy the iPhone 5, with another 24% undecided. Nearly one-third of respondents said they won’t be buying it.

Of the group that said it’s definitely buying, more than half -- 55% -- aren’t in any hurry, saying they don’t have a set timeframe for the purchase. The remaining 45% plan to pull the trigger on release day -- 35% online and 10% at a brick-and-mortar store.

Not surprisingly, a large percentage of buyers will be repeat customers. Nearly three out of four iPhone 4 and iPhone 3G owners, and 64% of iPhone 4S owners say they’re upgrading. And there’s lots of curiosity on the Android side of things; 22% of Android phone owners say they plan to buy the iPhone 5, with another 27% undecided. (It’s not clear if Apple plans to offer it in a plain brown wrapper.)

When it comes to what features iPhone 5 shoppers are looking for, let’s quote Ricky Bobby in Talladega Nights: “I wanna go fast!” Nine out of 10 people want a faster processor, and 83% want 4G speed, which Apple is expected to offer. The most-wanted feature, at 93%, is every smartphone user’s wish: longer battery life. And 76% want a bigger screen.

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