updated 12:11 pm EDT, Mon April 14, 2014
Might theoretically be justified by larger screen size
Apple has been asking carriers for approval to raise the base subsidized price of the iPhone 6 from $199 to $299, claims Jefferies analyst Peter Misek. The carriers have allegedly balked at the idea so far. Apple could potentially justify the increase due to the phone's bigger size; it's unclear in fact if the hike would apply to the 4.7-inch model or the 5.5-inch one, since Misek refers to just one iPhone 6. Many shoppers would likely assume a 5.5-inch phone would be more expensive.
If it fails to get a $100 increase Apple might still be able to persuade carriers to compromise, for instance accepting $50. In any case though that could make the iPhone a tougher proposition for the public. The iPhone is already an unusually expensive smartphone, particularly unlocked, at which point it starts at $649. Apple's normal advertised prices are only possible because of carrier subsidies, which are in turn linked to multi-year contracts.