iPhone To Impact Smartphone Use? - InformationWeek

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Commentary
6/7/2007
02:07 PM
Eric Ogren
Eric Ogren
Commentary
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iPhone To Impact Smartphone Use?

You betcha. But not in the way you might suspect. Rather than cannibalize sales of smartphones, Arm's CEO Warren East believes the iPhone will trigger widespread usage of smartphones and other converged devices. His prediction? Smartphone sales will double this year -- to nearly 200 million -- if the iPhone is a hit.

You betcha. But not in the way you might suspect. Rather than cannibalize sales of smartphones, Arm's CEO Warren East believes the iPhone will trigger widespread usage of smartphones and other converged devices. His prediction? Smartphone sales will double this year -- to nearly 200 million -- if the iPhone is a hit.East is obviously referring to the iPhone Effect. The iPhone Effect (not the reality distortion field) basically implies that because Apple has developed such a highly-sought-after device, other cell phone manufacturers are going to have to cook up some better products if they want to compete.

We're already seeing the results. Earlier this week, HTC launched a Wi-Fi and slick-interface-toting smartphone called the Touch. It may not be available in the United State right away, but we'll see it before the end of the year.

Recently RIM launched its consumer-targeted Curve smartphone. The Curve has many of the same basic specs of the iPhone, (EDGE data, 2-megapixel camera, multimedia capability) and offers simple email access. Oh, and it costs less than half what the iPhone does.

Other products, such as the Nokia N95, Motorola Z8, and LG Prada phones, all underscore the coming together of many functions into one device. None of them, however, has generated as much buzz as the iPhone.

In the end, I agree with Mr. East's position. I think AT&T is going to see a lot of sales of its other higher-end devices, such as the Curve, BlackJack, and Treo, when people go to stores to look at the iPhone, but then choose to buy something similar that's less expensive.

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