As Apple continues to face stiff competition from domestic rivals in China over smartphone sales, co-founder Steve Wozniak says Chinese manufacturers make smart decisions when it comes to low-cost handsets. However, despite Apple products' significantly high price tag, Wozniak says they're a "safe bet."

"Here is what I admire about Chinese phones," Wozniak told reporters at a technology forum in Dongguan, China, last week, the South China Morning Post reports. "Really good, intelligent decisions about how to lower the cost but keep enough of the functionality in, because I am into products that are good, well designed, nice looking, but at prices that the average person can afford."

However, Wozniak said he believes the quality and reliability of Apple's products justify its high price.

"In life I don't believe in quantity as much as I do in quality. So you may not have the hugest share in the market or be the No 1, but you should have the best product you can possibly build and Apple qualifies for that," Wozniak said.

"Apple products are safe. And Apple's pricing is high in the extreme. It's a safe bet for a lot of people, and when you love Apple you are willing to pay for it."

Wozniak worked alongside Steve Jobs to develop the first Apple computers back in the 1970s. In February 1985, he left his position as Apple's president of research and development, long before the debut of the iconic iPhone in 2007.

His latest comments come amid rumours that the Cupertino company's new upcoming iPhone 8, which will mark the iPhone's 10th anniversary, will cost at least $1000 (£770), making it the most expensive Apple smartphone so far.

He also insisted that Apple is not falling behind the pack in terms of new, innovative features.

"You can't be No 1 at everything when you make a huge volume, tens of millions of a product", Wozniak said. "You cannot make the best product you possibly could. You have to figure out the manufacturing steps to make something reliably in those quantities."