Part of my THE WAY I SEE IT series, where I quick-hit a few topics per week.
Apple has made its mark on the smartphone market, and the iPhone won’t be “killed” by another device any time soon. More than 3 million iPhone 4’s were sold, and even if that number was just one-third, they’d still make money. Apple has a broad number of devotees, so the iPhone isn’t going anywhere any time soon.
According to Wikipedia, as of December 2009, there were more than 285 million cell-phone toting Americans. Reported numbers of iPhones sold in the US greatly vary from 17 million to more than 20 million. Reports show Android devices have sold around 9 million. Hard data for other devices, including webOS, is hard to come by, but take note that “sold” doesn’t always mean in-use. For example, someone may have damaged their iPhone and bought a new one, but that still translates to a single user.
But even if the numbers are on a per-user scale, and accurate, that still leaves well over 200 million Americans using non-smartphones.
The way I see it, advocates of other devices (I’m particular to Palm’s webOS) need to spend less time focusing on getting iPhone, Android and other users to switch, and spend more time showing non-smartphone users why they need a full-featured mobile device. After all, the market of conversion from standard cell phones to smartphones stands to gain a lot more than the conversion of current users themselves.