iPhone's Effect on the Smartphone Market

Dennis Faas's picture

Now that it's been a while since the iPhone's release, it seems an appropriate time to discuss the device's impact on the "smartphone". ABI Research weighed in on the debate after revealing its forecast that the smartphone market segment will increase from 218 million units in 2007 to 426 million units in 2012.

Stuart Carlaw, wireless research director at ABI Research, says that although the iPhone will have a considerable impact, it will not have the ground-breaking effect that many had initially expected.

"The iPhone will not revolutionize the smartphone market," said Carlaw, "but it is a significant evolutionary step forward. As was pointed out once its specifications were made public, the iPhone is not cutting-edge telecommunications. Where it is radical -- in its user-interface and functionality -- it will certainly change forever the way handset manufacturers think about their design philosophies." (Source: ecoustics.com)

Carlaw says that two aspects of the iPhone will breed many imitations. First, touch screens will probably become more sensitive. Second, smartphones will start including accelerometers, the technology that allows a phone to orient its displays and controls depending on which way the handset is held. (Source: theinquirer.net)

"The iPhone's effect on the market will be similar to that of Motorola's Razr," said Carlaw. "It will spawn a number of look-and-feel-alikes and will be seen as a benchmark for future design." (Source: theinquirer.net)

Overall then, it seems that the verdict on the iPhone is this: innovative and superbly designed but not quite revolutionary.

That sounds just about right for an Apple product.

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