For me, and I think for most people, a phone is a phone and if it is practical and reliable that's what counts. There are some who want the latest and greatest but you can't run a business catering to only early adopters. Whether or not this is manipulation is irrelevant. Someone has made the common sense choice and in the long run that's good for the company, the customer and the smart phone market.
I feel like most consumers like myself buy a phone when there contract is up whatever the newest one is at that time. They dont buy based on when the phone is released. I buy a new phone every 2 years.
Total fiction! Less than 15 hours later a report comes out that Apple sold 29M iPhone X's at the top end of analysts expectations. Yet another doom and gloom prediction leading into earnings. And how many times has Apple disappointed? Buy on any weakness.