The U.S. market for smart phones continues to be a tough nut to crack for ... Smartphone News forum
Smart Phones Challenge Firms
The U.S. market for smart phones continues to be a tough nut to crack for the established handset makers.
Top-tier players such as Nokia Corp., Motorola Inc. and Samsung Electronics Co. control 80% of the market for cellphones but have struggled in the U.S. to sell smart phones -- phones that allow users to surf the Internet, send email and download music, among other advanced functions.
Often caught up satisfying carrier demands, handset makers have been slow to bring out products in this segment, opening the door for the likes of Research in Motion Ltd. and Apple Inc.
This could prove a crucial error for the traditional players, as they cede the fastest-growing and most profitable slice of the market. "They're really missing out on a critical high-end segment," said Hugues De La Vergne, an analyst at Gartner Inc.
It could be painful for the large handset companies because their strategies are predicated on selling more-expensive high-end phones to complement sales of cheaper mass-market phones, propping up the companies' overall margins. But consumers are turning away from high-end feature phones, which offer one or two special functions, and opting instead for a full-blown smart phone.
Smart phones are where the growth is. More than 35 million smart phones are expected to sell in the U.S. this year, up 77% from a year ago, in a market worth $11.8 billion, according to Gartner. By 2012, the market will be worth $29.2 billion, with nearly 100 million units sold.
I guess you could say Palm has dropped the ball as well by not producing exciting new equipment and a new OS.
~via BB (wap.pinstack.com)~
~via BB (wap.pinstack.com)~
My opinion, from the point of view of a smartphone poweruser, is the companies like RIM, who produce solely smartphones and their associated technologies, should stick to smartphones and those companies producing primaril cellular handsets should do the same.
There are probably three distinct markets for cellular technology. General phone users, comprised of families, always connected teens, individuals who just need a phone, and business users who require 100% connectivity at all times.
With distinct markets come distinct requirements. What's wrong with companies doing what they do best and satisfying one portion of the market.
As much as I love my Blackberries, when I purchased a 7100i to be used on the Telus Mike network I was sorely disappointed. RIM took the worst of BB technology and married it to the worst of PTT technology. Thus is was left with a less than functional BB tied to a Mike phone that had very limited service areas. My only solution was to turn off the device and purchase a Motorola i880 handset. Now I am stuck paying for a data package I can't use.
At the same time I couldn't be without my BB 9000.
I don't see any need for PHONE makers to bust into the Smartphone market or vice versa. The market can, and will support both developers for a long long time. Why jam out barely passable or even sub-standard devices just to get a small piece of every market?
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