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Verizon iPhone 4 accounts for 32% of all US iPhone 4 traffic

post #1 of 33
Thread Starter 
After just four months on the market, the iPhone 4 on Verizon makes up nearly a third of the U.S. iPhone 4 market, according to one analytics firm.

Mobile analytics firm Localytics published a report on on Thursday charting the growth of the Verizon iPhone 4 since it launched in February, as noted by Brad Reed of Network World. The report compiles data from app usage during the last week of the month to reflect each carrier's market share.

As of July 1, Verizon's share of all U.S. iPhone 4 traffic stands at 32 percent, compared to AT&T's 68 percent share. According to the report, the carrier's presence quickly jumped to a 20 percent share shortly after launch before slowing down to modest gains in the spring. Then, in May and June, Verizon's share of U.S. iPhone 4 app usage experienced a spike in growth, growing from 25.9 percent to 32.3 percent.

The firm speculated that adoption on Verizon may have ramped up ahead of the carrier's July 7 transition away from unlimited data plans. The wireless operator had previously warned that unlimited iPhone plans would only be available for a limited time. A leak last month correctly predicted the July 7 change.



Rival carrier AT&T did away with its unlimited data plans last June, though some subscribers reported having been offered an unlimited plan from the company earlier this year as the Verizon iPhone launch loomed.

Verizon announced in April that it had activated 2.2 million iPhone 4 units less than two months after the device's launch, making it the most successful handset launch in the company's history. By way of comparison, AT&T activated 3.6 million iPhones in the first quarter of this year, though that figure also includes a portion of iPhone 3GS models sold. All told, Apple sold 18.65 million iPhones during that period.



Apple is expected to simultaneously launch the iPhone 5 on both Verizon and AT&T. Various reports have suggested that the next-generation handset will be a dual-mode GSM-CDMA device.

Rumors of the iPhone 5 have picked up steam as of late ahead of an expected fall release. On Wednesday, The Wall Street Journal reported that the next-generation device will be thinner and lighter with an 8-megapixel camera.
post #2 of 33
Wow 32% in four months. That was fast! Though these numbers might plateau thanks to the new tiered plans.
post #3 of 33
I get that the carrier tie-in is more percentage-profitable for Apple but to rob themselves of such a larger customer base? I think Apple have got this very wrong.

They'd be neck & neck with Android with a more conventional sales strategy & earning loads more. Their original plan failed to account for incumbent carrier lock-in.
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post #4 of 33
Imagine if they could talk and surf?
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post #5 of 33
Quote:
Originally Posted by dasanman69 View Post

Imagine if they could talk and surf?

It'd be nice if "we" could, but AT&T's service sucks out here. That's why I have Verizon. If it wasn't for that I might've given AT&T a try if it wasn't for that. Whenever apple implements 4G-LTE in a iPhone, that'll be a problem of the past for us Verizon wireless subscribers. Until then!
post #6 of 33
Quote:
Originally Posted by McDave View Post

I get that the carrier tie-in is more percentage-profitable for Apple but to rob themselves of such a larger customer base? I think Apple have got this very wrong.

They'd be neck & neck with Android with a more conventional sales strategy & earning loads more. Their original plan failed to account for incumbent carrier lock-in.

You're simply not thinking about this clearly.
  • Apple started off with very limited supply, they couldn't have shipped many more early iPhones than they did
  • Almost no other carriers use CDMA, the Verizon iPhone had to be specially designed, tested and built
  • Carrier agreements need to be negotiated, it takes time, and people
People think that Android grew faster than Apple becuase Apple made a mistake, but that's simply incorrect. Android grew faster because it has a different model, Apple didn't want to license their OS so they could never have grown at the same speed - they had to ramp up manufacturing and negotiate contracts.
post #7 of 33
Twelve months ago, there sure were a lot of people saying Apple should/would never release a Verizon iPhone. Apparently those people are now MIA. Now its that Apple should/would never release a cheaper iPhone (a la the iPod Mini/Nano/Shuffle). We'll see.
post #8 of 33
Quote:
Originally Posted by Darkstar2007 View Post

It'd be nice if "we" could, but AT&T's service sucks out here. That's why I have Verizon. If it wasn't for that I might've given AT&T a try if it wasn't for that. Whenever apple implements 4G-LTE in a iPhone, that'll be a problem of the past for us Verizon wireless subscribers. Until then!

I think AT&T might be in trouble in the next 18-38 months when LTE roll out is complete. They'll have to compete with other US carriers who have put much more effort into network building while AT&T rested on being the sole iPhone provider.
post #9 of 33
Quote:
Originally Posted by shadash View Post

Now its that Apple should/would never release a cheaper iPhone (a la the iPod Mini/Nano/Shuffle). We'll see.

It depends what you mean by a cheaper iPhone. For starters it's close to certain that Apple wouldn't release an iPhone that feels cheap in your hand. The original Shuffle arguably did, but it wasn't generally viewed as a success and the new shuffle was a complete redesign.

There's the problem of form-factor vs utility. The Nano was a break-out hit because most people didn't need 80GB of music, and if you only needed 4 it was the perfect device. It's much harder to reduce the form-factor of the iPhone substantially without gimping it. Reduce the screen much and you're left with an iPhone-nano that is a feature phone with no apps or web browsing - I'm not sure how they'd brand it.

Then there is the question of market. A cheaper iPhone for China is easy for Apple to do because China has a unique CDMA standard so there's no risk of grey market imports damaging their other sales. A cheaper iPhone for America or Europe needs to be strongly differentiated from the existing offering - I'll assume you're talking about this case.

What to do about the 3GS? The 3GS has supply all set up and plant running. Building a new phone from scratch entails organising more of both, and that comes at a cost. Given those sunk costs It's hard to see how Apple can manufacture something cheaper than the 3GS with the same form factor without making the device feel cheap. This is why many of us feel that the 3GS is likely to remain the cheaper iPhone in the west for another product cycle at least.

A cheaper iPhone that isn't just a 3GS (or variant) requires Apple to either reduce the form factor and hence utility, reduce the build/material quality and hence luxury or cannibalize existing sales. Which of those do you think they'll opt for, or do you have some other suggestion?
post #10 of 33
Quote:
Originally Posted by BenRoethig View Post

I think AT&T might be in trouble in the next 18-38 months when LTE roll out is complete. They'll have to compete with other US carriers who have put much more effort into network building while AT&T rested on being the sole iPhone provider.

Once iPhone became available on other carriers in the UK there was an exodus away from O2 for pretty much exactly that reason.
post #11 of 33
Quote:
Originally Posted by shadash View Post

Twelve months ago, there sure were a lot of people saying Apple should/would never release a Verizon iPhone. Apparently those people are now MIA. Now its that Apple should/would never release a cheaper iPhone (a la the iPod Mini/Nano/Shuffle). We'll see.

I was one of those people, in many respects I stick with the same argument.

iPhone 4's are hard to get worldwide, supply is tight. All of those Verizon phones could have been GSM handhelds which are used by the rest of the planet.

Supply would have been less constrained, to assist the American market Apple could have released the iPhone to Sprint and T-Mobile.
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post #12 of 33
Quote:
Originally Posted by saarek View Post

iPhone 4's are hard to get worldwide, supply is tight. All of those Verizon phones could have been GSM handhelds which are used by the rest of the planet.

What are you basing that on? iPhone-4s have had pretty good availability for a while now in my experience. Which markets still have substantial backlogs?
post #13 of 33
I don't buy these figures. I have no idea of the methodology or where the error occurred, but the results are just not plausible.

The claim that Verizon had 20% of iPhone 4 traffic the week of Feb 10 - the first week the phone was on sale through Verizon. Yet 5 months later, that number has only reached 32%.

So we're expected to believe that they sold twice as much in the first week as in the following 5 months? Just doesn't seem plausible.
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post #14 of 33
Quote:
Originally Posted by McDave View Post

I get that the carrier tie-in is more percentage-profitable for Apple but to rob themselves of such a larger customer base? I think Apple have got this very wrong.

They'd be neck & neck with Android with a more conventional sales strategy & earning loads more. Their original plan failed to account for incumbent carrier lock-in.

Huh? Are you referring to Apple's original exclusive relationship with AT&T? Apple broke the mold on wireless business with the iPhone. They gave AT&T exclusive access to the iPhone, and in turn Apple got total control over the phone and how it worked. It allowed them to build the whole iTunes/App store ecosystem. Before that the carriers controlled what was on the phones on their networks. Those were cellphones - usually branded with the carriers name. Now we have smartphones, thanks to Apple. Verizon had a chance at the original iPhone, but they did not want to give Apple all the control that AT&T did.

The Android would not exist in its current form without the change to the wireless industry that Apple brought. You can see where Android has suffered because it started out trying to bring out a smartphone under the old cellphone model. Android is a fine smartphone platform, but the first releases have been scattered and uncoordinated resulting in phones of different vendors and carriers being on different releases with different features and different interfaces. Software updates have also been scattered and inconsistent. Google seems to be making moves to try to bring this under control, and Apple needs to open up more, but the whole wireless as we know it now would not exist if AT&T and Apple had not made their original deal.

And Apple is so profitable with the iPhone, iPad, and iOS ecosystem they have crafted they don't worry about how many competing smartphones are sold, they care about how large of revenue stream each iPhone user generates over the long-term.
post #15 of 33
Quote:
Originally Posted by jragosta View Post

I don't buy these figures. I have no idea of the methodology or where the error occurred, but the results are just not plausible.

The methodology appears to be based on a proprietary App usage tracking system which Localytics supply. I imagine that only a minority of Apps in the marketplace are using this and it's entirely possible that this could result in significant mis-sampling.
post #16 of 33
Quote:
Originally Posted by cloudgazer View Post

What are you basing that on? iPhone-4s have had pretty good availability for a while now in my experience. Which markets still have substantial backlogs?

Not sure which country you're from, but there is an average of one week wait for an iPhone 4 in my area on all networks.
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post #17 of 33
Quote:
Originally Posted by dasanman69 View Post

Imagine if they could talk and surf?

Buy two iPhones. If you're an Apple buff you should have plenty of money.
post #18 of 33
It is fantasy IMO.

Another similar analytics company, Chitka, has the number pegged closer to 10% (seems a bit low to me but closer to reality). At one point, Chitka tracked this number as high as 20% and then AT&T did something; a $49 iPhone 3G S. Since then, the percentage has been dropping steadily.

I suspect the $49 iPhone 3G S is a very very hot seller.
post #19 of 33
This actually makes sense to me. Most people on Verizon who have an iPhone are probably first time iPhone users. There did not appear to be a huge number of people dumping AT&T for Verizon who already had an iPhone. As a result, I think the Verizon customers are playing with their "new Toy" more because it is new to them. After the new wears off most people use their smartphone less...

Of course this is just an opinion and speculation, but I think it is a reasonable explanation...
post #20 of 33
Quote:
Originally Posted by sranger View Post

This actually makes sense to me. Most people on Verizon who have an iPhone are probably first time iPhone users. There did not appear to be a huge number of people dumping AT&T for Verizon who already had an iPhone. As a result, I think the Verizon customers are playing with their "new Toy" more because it is new to them. After the new wears off most people use their smartphone less...

Of course this is just an opinion and speculation, but I think it is a reasonable explanation...

I second that opinion... especially for that first week on Verizon.

Everyone got their new toy and went crazy with it in that first week... then they settled into a regular usage pattern followed by a surge when people learned that unlimited data would not be available after a certain date.

Otherwise... 20% in the first week!?... c'mon, you're pulling my leg...
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post #21 of 33
Quote:
Originally Posted by Steven N. View Post

It is fantasy IMO.

Another similar analytics company, Chitka, has the number pegged closer to 10% (seems a bit low to me but closer to reality). At one point, Chitka tracked this number as high as 20% and then AT&T did something; a $49 iPhone 3G S. Since then, the percentage has been dropping steadily.

I suspect the $49 iPhone 3G S is a very very hot seller.

Actually that's not true - the Chitka numbers are weird. I watched them, and still do, from the first mention of them here. They VERY steadily climbed up to about 20%, about a month ago. Then one day, it went back to 10%, and has been near there ever since. So something in their methodology changed. It had nothing to do with ATT's launch of the 3GS, your timeframes are all whacked.
post #22 of 33
Quote:
Originally Posted by cameronj View Post

Actually that's not true - the Chitka numbers are weird. I watched them, and still do, from the first mention of them here. They VERY steadily climbed up to about 20%, about a month ago. Then one day, it went back to 10%, and has been near there ever since. So something in their methodology changed. It had nothing to do with ATT's launch of the 3GS, your timeframes are all whacked.

And the drop started about 2-3 months back. I never saw a step change but they may have some whacky stuff going on.
post #23 of 33
Quote:
Originally Posted by saarek View Post

Not sure which country you're from, but there is an average of one week wait for an iPhone 4 in my area on all networks.

I live in the exotic land of London, England where almost a year ago I walked in off the street and bought an iPhone 4. Where are you?
post #24 of 33
Quote:
Originally Posted by Steven N. View Post

And the drop started about 2-3 months back. I never saw a step change but they may have some whacky stuff going on.

I check it about every 2 days. And yes, it went from 20% to 10% with no intervening data points.
post #25 of 33
Quote:
Originally Posted by BenRoethig View Post

I think AT&T might be in trouble in the next 18-38 months when LTE roll out is complete. They'll have to compete with other US carriers who have put much more effort into network building while AT&T rested on being the sole iPhone provider.

I don't think so. At&t is way faster than Verizon and they do not charge strange fees.

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post #26 of 33
Quote:
Originally Posted by Obama View Post

Buy two iPhones. If you're an Apple buff you should have plenty of money.

Yeah, exactly.

Obama..... I mean, you should simply use ownership of Apple as the filter to increase taxes to narrow the deficit....
post #27 of 33
Whatever the true number, I would expect to see it explode with the release of the next iPhone in the fall. It's impressive that the Verizon iPhone has seen the rate of adoption it has given that it was closer to end of life than not on release.

The simultaneous releases of a new model on Verizon and AT&T will be our first chance to see straight up head to head numbers.
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post #28 of 33
Quote:
Originally Posted by cameronj View Post

I check it about every 2 days. And yes, it went from 20% to 10% with no intervening data points.

They are now about 20%. I have been seeing a gradual decline over the past several months but now it is looking like the data is just random based on when you look at it.
post #29 of 33
Quote:
Originally Posted by Steven N. View Post

They are now about 20%. I have been seeing a gradual decline over the past several months but now it is looking like the data is just random based on when you look at it.

Heh, back at 20. I leave a tab on my iPhone open to that page, so when I switch to that tab, I see the former amount before it refreshes. It was a gradually changing ratio until it hit 20%, now it goes back and forth from 10 to 20. So much for the value of that service.
post #30 of 33
Quote:
Originally Posted by cloudgazer View Post

...What to do about the 3GS? The 3GS has supply all set up and plant running. Building a new phone from scratch entails organising more of both, and that comes at a cost. Given those sunk costs It's hard to see how Apple can manufacture something cheaper than the 3GS with the same form factor without making the device feel cheap. This is why many of us feel that the 3GS is likely to remain the cheaper iPhone in the west for another product cycle at least.

The problem with just keeping the 3GS is it is not CDMA.
post #31 of 33
30% of iPhone 4s if you look at Chitka Labs http://labs.chitika.com/iZone/
They show ATT web usage for all iPhones running around 90% M-F and Dropping to 80% on the weekends when I guess Verizon users have time to browse from their phones. Who's to say what causes the dramatic change but it happens every weekend for the last 3+ months a 5%+ change. The reason Verizon can't catch up is the $49 3GS and all those users still using their 1st and 2nd Gen iPhones (or passed them on to family members). If we are going to play his game let's see how all the models of Android stack up, a pinch here and a pinch there no real winners.
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post #32 of 33
Quote:
Originally Posted by shadash View Post

The problem with just keeping the 3GS is it is not CDMA.

That's not really a big problem, the cheap phone is needed primarily for pay as you go customers, and they're not on Verizon, they're out in the rest of the world where GSM is completely dominant. Given the higher license fees and limited market it seems unlikely that Apple's first low-price by design phone would be CDMA-2000.
post #33 of 33
Quote:
Originally Posted by jragosta View Post

I don't buy these figures. I have no idea of the methodology or where the error occurred, but the results are just not plausible.

The claim that Verizon had 20% of iPhone 4 traffic the week of Feb 10 - the first week the phone was on sale through Verizon. Yet 5 months later, that number has only reached 32%.

So we're expected to believe that they sold twice as much in the first week as in the following 5 months? Just doesn't seem plausible.

Part of it is that many of the initial verizon iphones where returned. People switching from their android phones did not like the feel of the iphone. For a lot of people the large screen size, full keyboards, and many other android features made it to much of a change. My ex had an og Droid she raced to get an iphone 4 then a week later she talked about its nice but she missed her keyboard, maps, widgets and how it synced to her google calendar. She took it back and is getting the Droid three next week. Your going to see this if the iphone goes to sprint also. People get comfortable with something and stick with it despite the downsides of it.
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