Friday, May 16, 2008

The iPhone Pandemic

Last winter quarter (calendar Q4 2007) the iPhone was on sales in only 4 countries in the world.
It was not 3G, it did not have GPS or even maps with location, it wasn't enterprise friendly and did not have any 3rd party apps support. Most of all, it was not easily unlocked and it was sold trough only one carrier per country.

Yet somehow Apple managed to sell some 2.3 million iPhones, and this device alone gave Apple 6.5 percent share of the world smartphone market.

This holiday season or the calendar Q4 2008, Apple will have a much bigger deal for the world. The iPhone will have 3G, GPS, and 3rd party apps. It will be enterprise and game console ready. It will sell troughout the world (the map depics all known and rumoured launch countries), and it will sell in many cases with more that one operator per country. If that is not enough, the 3G iPhone will likely cost less with subscription and will largely be available unlocked too.

In short, Apple will have a widely available, cheeper and much more capable iPhone, that is much more supported by the world industry as a whole. 

This turn of events will likely make the iPhone the best selling smartphone in the world by a wide margin just in time for Macworld 2009.

P.S. The list with possible iPhone countries is current as of 27.05.2008

Let's look at the numbers for a second. The following table lists smartphone sales for Q4 of 2005, 2006 and 2007. I have added projection for 2008 based on a less than full exponential increase due to the iPhone. The iPhone sales on the other hand are based on the average iPod sales increase for the same quarters in its first 3 years.

Here is how will that translate into the smartphone market share for the 4 companies. 

It's clear that Apple will be still #2 in the world, but with just one device.  If we add the sales to the iPod touch, Apple will be virtually the worlds pocket-held computer leader in terms of a common platform in the market.

No comments: