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Apple's iPhone the No. 4 U.S. handset during third quarter

post #1 of 65
Thread Starter 
Apple Inc.'s iPhone ranked No. 4 amongst all U.S. handset for the third calendar quarter of 2007 in terms of sales and is on track to potentially take over the No. 1 spot sometime in the next two quarters, according to a new report.

Data released Friday by global research and consulting firm Strategy Analytics projects that nearly 1.1 million units of the sleek touch-screen handset were delivered to U.S. consumers through the combined AT&T and Apple outlets during the third quarter, totaling 1.325 million units since its launch late in the second quarter.

Barry Gilbert, VP of the Strategy Analytics BuyerTRAX programs, said in the report that iPhone has emerged as AT&T’s top selling device, commanding some 13 percent of the wireless provider's overall handset sales, and the 4th top selling handset in the U.S. market.

"Although the iPhone hasn’t had an expansionary impact in the market, the iPhone has quickly assumed a leading market share position and raised the ante for smart devices," he wrote. "The sales trajectory we are observing with the iPhone could make it the top selling device in the U.S. over the next 1-2 quarters."

Currently, the top selling handset in the U.S. continues to be Motorola’s RAZR V3, however it appears to be losing momentum as new and more competitive models that erode both its share and popularity are being introduced. Strategy Analytics noted that the top 10 handset models account for approximately 25 percent of total handset sales in a typical quarter despite an increasing number of device offerings.

"The typical iPhone buyer is upwardly mobile, college educated with a six-figure household income," said David Kerr, Vice President of the Strategy Analytics Global Wireless Practice. "While the largest percentage of iPhone buyers is between 20-30 years old, the fact that nearly 25 percent were between 50-60 years old demonstrates that the device attracts buyers across a broad age spectrum."

Thus far, iPhone users are quite satisfied with the phone's design and features, Kerr added. However, they are slightly less enamored of actual iPhone reliability, battery life, documentation and customer support.
post #2 of 65
What's wrong with the reliability, battery life, documentation (LOADS of it) and customer support?

Where did he get that from? I'm curious.
post #3 of 65
Yea, there is always room for improvement, but the iphone is the best device I have ever purchased and I have purchased many a electronic device in my lifetime and I'm one of the 50 year olds they referenced.

Everyone I show it to loves it..as it exceeds the hype the media and Apple gave it.
post #4 of 65
My daughter is on her 4th iphone... lots of reliability problems with hers. My wife's and mine are still going strong. No battery life problems either - never been below half charge.
Customer support has been A+ as usual for Apple.
Maybe a little FUD spin on the good news?
post #5 of 65
Well it's certainly the coolest phone on the market, with the most potential too. 2008 is the real year for the iPhone, it will tell a lot.


Not to mention iPhone nano, when that comes out:


Take the existing look of the iPhone, same 3 sensors, same materials, same glass front, same aluminum back with chrome Apple logo, and the same black plastic bottom to cover the antennas.

Now, remove all 5 internet functions; stocks, maps, weather, Mail and Safari, and reduce the size of the screen from 3 1/2" to about 2 3/4", and reduce the size of the phone accordingly. As the screen is smaller than the iPhone, and it's not a smartphone, it will NOT have a QWERTY keyboard, but rather a T9 software equivalent like the Prada phone has.

Some people have suggested the iPhone is not a "smartphone", well the iPhone nano is definitely not a smartphone. It's an iPod that can make calls, send texts, and take snaps--all with a cool multi-touch UI under a full screen of glass. Oh, and yes it does video. 4GB and 8GB versions which should retail for about $249 and $349 respectively.

Apple may even choose at a point to add QWERTY functionality. When in T9 keyboard mode, you turn the iPhone nano to landscape and you have a QWERTY horizontal keyboard, using software and the internal sensor. The resulting QWERTY keyboard would even be slightly bigger than the vertical one on the regular iPhone. Current iPhone owners need not worry though, as Apple should add that horizontal keyboard to most, if not all iPhone apps over time.

In Summery: No Edge, no 3G, no Wifi, no internet. Just an iPod and a phone, but with the same iPhone-like multi-touch user-interface. And yes, it comes in colors!
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post #6 of 65
I think this is a great position for any smartphone to be in, especially considering the fact that the free / stylish flip phones will probably always be in the top few positions. Considering the iPhone only launched last June, which people tend to forget, this is amazing news.
post #7 of 65
Quote:
Originally Posted by DeaPeaJay View Post

What's wrong with the reliability, battery life, documentation (LOADS of it) and customer support?

Where did he get that from? I'm curious.

He said "slightly"
post #8 of 65
Someone please, please post that quote from the (Palm?) CEO deriding Apple's ability to just come in and change the smartphone industry overnight.
post #9 of 65
Quote:
Originally Posted by macinthe408 View Post

Someone please, please post that quote from the (Palm?) CEO deriding Apple's ability to just come in and change the smartphone industry overnight.

"Is Apple serious competition? Palm CEO Ed Colligan seems downright nonchalant about rumors that Apple may introduce a mobile phone to market in the coming year," Sarah Jane Tribble and Dean Takahashi report for The San Jose Mercury News.

Tribble and Takahashi report, "Responding to questions from New York Times correspondent John Markoff at a Churchill Club breakfast gathering Thursday morning, Colligan laughed off the idea that any company -- including the wildly popular Apple Computer -- could easily win customers in the finicky smart-phone sector. 'We've learned and struggled for a few years here figuring out how to make a decent phone,' he said. 'PC guys are not going to just figure this out. They're not going to just walk in.'"

http://www.macdailynews.com/index.ph...iphone_threat/
post #10 of 65
Quote:
Originally Posted by MacVicta View Post

"Is Apple serious competition? Palm CEO Ed Colligan seems downright nonchalant about rumors that Apple may introduce a mobile phone to market in the coming year," Sarah Jane Tribble and Dean Takahashi report for The San Jose Mercury News.

Tribble and Takahashi report, "Responding to questions from New York Times correspondent John Markoff at a Churchill Club breakfast gathering Thursday morning, Colligan laughed off the idea that any company -- including the wildly popular Apple Computer -- could easily win customers in the finicky smart-phone sector. 'We've learned and struggled for a few years here figuring out how to make a decent phone,' he said. 'PC guys are not going to just figure this out. They're not going to just walk in.'"

http://www.macdailynews.com/index.ph...iphone_threat/

This was back in November of '06.
So this was when Palm was getting hyped about the Foleo, eh?



...it's kinda like that "Smarter than a 5th Grader" show.
haha
post #11 of 65
So... what were # 2 and #3?!

As for reliability problems, I'm on my second, and it shows signs of similar touchpad problems that my first one had. Apple was great about swapping it out though.

It almost got thrown off the roof of a hotel a couple months ago when Safari kept crashing though. Ironically, on Apple's website. An amazingly high number of people I talk to bemoan the lack of integration between contacts and SMS (SMS a contact to someone), SMS and E-Mail, and copy - paste.

Apple really needs to deal with those limitations before the UK Launch, unless they really have the fanatical fanbase comparable to the US.

If nothing else... it looks good... and that is really why people buy mobile phones...
post #12 of 65
Quote:
Originally Posted by DeaPeaJay View Post

What's wrong with the reliability, battery life, documentation (LOADS of it) and customer support?

Where did he get that from? I'm curious.

Nothing's wrong. They're "slightly less enamored" about those boring things than about the exciting features--but apparently still enamored

If they don't like the iPhone's long talk time, they REALLY don't want to try one of those other smart phones that only gets 2-3 hours battery life! (And yet tend to be thick as a brick, for some unknown reason. Maybe 3G is their problem )
post #13 of 65
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ireland View Post

Some people have suggested the iPhone is not a "smartphone", .....

I agree. It's not a "smart"phone, it is a geniusphone. Not to get too teary-eyed about it or anything, but no consumer electronics product I have used before compares in form or function.

post #14 of 65
Quote:
Originally Posted by aaarrrgggh View Post

An amazingly high number of people I talk to bemoan the lack of integration between contacts and SMS (SMS a contact to someone), SMS and E-Mail, and copy - paste.

I wonder why they bought it, then. Those limitations are well-known. Moreover, those are fixes that will come in time.

If folks in the UK want to wait until that happens, then they should! (I predict, though, that it will fly off the shelves in the UK, France, and Germany; we'll know for sure in a few weeks, won't we!).

(One more thing: I don't see why is is so difficult to SMS a contact to someone. In the US, it is very easy to send a text message to anyone via email. The one that I use is number@teleflip.com. Try it out!)
post #15 of 65
Quote:
Originally Posted by aaarrrgggh View Post

So... what were # 2 and #3?!

As for reliability problems, I'm on my second, and it shows signs of similar touchpad problems that my first one had. Apple was great about swapping it out though.

It almost got thrown off the roof of a hotel a couple months ago when Safari kept crashing though. Ironically, on Apple's website. An amazingly high number of people I talk to bemoan the lack of integration between contacts and SMS (SMS a contact to someone), SMS and E-Mail, and copy - paste.

Apple really needs to deal with those limitations before the UK Launch, unless they really have the fanatical fanbase comparable to the US.

If nothing else... it looks good... and that is really why people buy mobile phones...

You know, at some point, the idea that iPhone sales are propped up by fan boys, or that sales are propped up by the fashion conscious (or that sales are propped up by the delusional, or those succumbing to the the RDF) isn't going to work anymore. As will the idea that sales are soon to take a tumble (if not here than in one of those super demanding European cell phone paradises) because of not have enough "features".

The iPhone is very popular, is selling well, appears to have good prospects, and has very high customer satisfaction ratings.

Maybe, just maybe, there are plenty of people who think the iPhone is a good value for what it does, feel that it does what they want how they want it, and continue to think so after they buy one and tell other people so.

Is that really so hard to believe? That Apple got some things really right, in an industry largely devoted to features buried under terrible UIs? And that there a lot of buyers that appreciated that? And that that is more important than one feature or another?

It doesn't have to always be smoke and mirrors or some kind of misunderstanding or an anomalous blip. Could be Apple made a phone that people want and will buy, in every larger numbers.
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post #16 of 65
Quote:
Originally Posted by anantksundaram View Post

I agree. It's not a "smart"phone, it is a geniusphone.

I know it is, but the iPhone nano wont be, that was just my little point.
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post #17 of 65
Where do they get the numbers? Are they simply counting all the iphones sold? Last week we read the iphone was a top seller for the street vendors in Mumbai. Are they counting all the iphones sold in NYC that may be heading to Europe? Are they counting all the iphones in Japan?
post #18 of 65
Quote:
Originally Posted by addabox View Post

You know, at some point, the idea that iPhone sales are propped up by fan boys, or that sales are propped up by the fashion conscious (or that sales are propped up by the delusional, or those succumbing to the the RDF) isn't going to work anymore.

That's what amazes me. A phone breaks onto the scene in a cut-throat market like cellular phone services that requires a carrier lock and more cash than most other phones and rips customers away from their current plans and phones in the numbers that the iPhone is generating and people attribute it to "fanboyism"?

Sheesh. Can you imagine if people WEREN'T locked into existing plans with carriers other than AT&T? I mean, come on! AT&T has a cellular customer base of 63.7 million subscribers out of the more than 233 million cell phone users in the US. iPhone purchases will continue in large numbers for the next couple of years as contract periods expire.

By then the iPhone / AT&T carrier lock contract will expire and Apple will be able to expand onto those other carriers networks... if those other carriers still exist. It'll be interesting.
post #19 of 65
Quote:
Originally Posted by addabox View Post

You know, at some point, the idea that iPhone sales are propped up by fan boys, or that sales are propped up by the fashion conscious (or that sales are propped up by the delusional, or those succumbing to the the RDF) isn't going to work anymore. As will the idea that sales are soon to take a tumble (if not here than in one of those super demanding European cell phone paradises) because of not have enough "features".

The iPhone is very popular, is selling well, appears to have good prospects, and has very high customer satisfaction ratings.

Maybe, just maybe, there are plenty of people who think the iPhone is a good value for what it does, feel that it does what they want how they want it, and continue to think so after they buy one and tell other people so.

Is that really so hard to believe? That Apple got some things really right, in an industry largely devoted to features buried under terrible UIs? And that there a lot of buyers that appreciated that? And that that is more important than one feature or another?

It doesn't have to always be smoke and mirrors or some kind of misunderstanding or an anomalous blip. Could be Apple made a phone that people want and will buy, in every larger numbers.


Here, here. Very well put. Thank you.
post #20 of 65
Quote:
Originally Posted by addabox View Post

You know, at some point, the idea that iPhone sales are propped up by fan boys, or that sales are propped up by the fashion conscious...

The reality of the cell phone market is that there are two primary segments: functionality and fashion.

The RAZR was a bastard in terms of functionality, but it was a success in fashion. Newer Blackberries become must-haves for PHB and middle managers because they *look* so much better than the old ones. In almost none of these cases is the core functionality the incentive to purchase, or more importantly, upgrade the phone. People buy a new one because it looks better.

Clearly the fact that the RAZR is the best selling phone in history must validate this fact...

The functional market is very different; it is broken into two distinct groups - feature and anti-feature. The feature groups want the built-in microwave oven functionality, and the anti-feature group just want a damn phone that makes calls.

Where Apple has been most successful with the iPhone marketing from what I see is the group whose functional demands are minimal, fashion value high, and help to convert them into higher-end function users. That is simply good marketing. It has nothing to do with 3G, RDF, or anything else. From standing in line though, I know that the bulk of the first two weeks sales were people that would be broadly classified as fanboys. The more politically correct term would be "early adopter..."
post #21 of 65
Fourth? What was one, two, and three.
post #22 of 65
Quote:
Originally Posted by BlackSummerNight View Post

Fourth? What was one, two, and three.

A web site (http://www.1800mobiles.com/) claims:

Quote:
Best Selling 5 cell phones in America:
Motorola RAZR Phones
Motorola SLVR Cell Phone
Cingular LG CU500
Samsung Blackjack Phone
Blackberry Pearl

Looks like they haven't updated their info yet.
post #23 of 65
Quote:
Originally Posted by aaarrrgggh View Post

The reality of the cell phone market is that there are two primary segments: functionality and fashion.

With all due respect, that's nonsense.

There's form, and there's function. Apple has always combined the two well. For some, "form" might indeed be "fashion," but that's not the vast majority of people I know. Indeed, I'll venture a guess that it's not the vast majority of iPhone users.
post #24 of 65
Quote:
Originally Posted by anantksundaram View Post

I wonder why they bought it, then. Those limitations are well-known. Moreover, those are fixes that will come in time.

If folks in the UK want to wait until that happens, then they should! (I predict, though, that it will fly off the shelves in the UK, France, and Germany; we'll know for sure in a few weeks, won't we!).

'Folk' [1] buy lots of things without researching what it actually does, especially if it's hyped or the latest new thing from a company with a fashionable brand. I'd disagree that those limitations are well known outside of tech circles. 'Folk' just presume something does all the things their last gadget does and more. How many times have you come across people who presume that Windows comes with Office? or a new copy of OSX comes with iLife ?

For Europe it could come as quite a shock as more of the feature set of other phones are used here when they're not in the USA.

Quote:
Originally Posted by anantksundaram View Post

(One more thing: I don't see why is is so difficult to SMS a contact to someone. In the US, it is very easy to send a text message to anyone via email. The one that I use is number@teleflip.com. Try it out!)

But people don't want to use email for sending contacts, they want to use SMS or Bluetooth. People don't use email to send contacts, normally.

But what's wrong with choice anyway? Click on 'Send' on a contact in my phone and I get asked if I want to send it via Bluetooth, Email, SMS, Infrared, Bluetooth shared and even MMS (I presume the picture for the contact is sent too if the vCard format supports it). My phone is almost 4 year old.

Do iPhones even have a 'Send Contact' button ?


[1] Use 'Folk' in the UK and people think you're a country idiot or just stepped off the set of a costume drama. It's an old word we don't use.
post #25 of 65
Quote:
Originally Posted by Taskiss View Post

Motorola RAZR Phones
Motorola SLVR Cell Phone
Cingular LG CU500
Samsung Blackjack Phone
Blackberry Pearl

None of which are top sellers here in the UK. The only recent stats I found were for Vodafone but all the carriers here sell the same phones for the most part. Vodafone sells Treos too whereas nobody else does now.

Here's Vodafone's top 9 in reverse order as reported by http://mobilementalism.com/2007/10/0...s-for-october/

9). Sony Ericsson K800i
8). Nokia 7373
7). Sony Ericsson W850i
6). Nokia 6110 Navi
5). Sony Ericsson W880i
4).Nokia 6300
3). Nokia N95
2). Samsung U700
1). Samsung G600

It's surprising to see the Samsungs at 1 and 2 but they've been heavily advertised on TV here recently.
post #26 of 65
Quote:
Originally Posted by aaarrrgggh View Post

The reality of the cell phone market is that there are two primary segments: functionality and fashion.

The RAZR was a bastard in terms of functionality, but it was a success in fashion. Newer Blackberries become must-haves for PHB and middle managers because they *look* so much better than the old ones. In almost none of these cases is the core functionality the incentive to purchase, or more importantly, upgrade the phone. People buy a new one because it looks better.

Clearly the fact that the RAZR is the best selling phone in history must validate this fact...

The functional market is very different; it is broken into two distinct groups - feature and anti-feature. The feature groups want the built-in microwave oven functionality, and the anti-feature group just want a damn phone that makes calls.

Where Apple has been most successful with the iPhone marketing from what I see is the group whose functional demands are minimal, fashion value high, and help to convert them into higher-end function users. That is simply good marketing. It has nothing to do with 3G, RDF, or anything else. From standing in line though, I know that the bulk of the first two weeks sales were people that would be broadly classified as fanboys. The more politically correct term would be "early adopter..."

I like the functional/fashion distinction as it is an interesting topic of conversation.

However, I would characterize the razor in the exact opposite manner you have. Sure, it is nice looking, but I think it is one of the most functional phones ever made. It has nice large buttons, good speaker placement, good size, etc.

I see the feature-loaded phones as being more fashion motivated then most of the basic/simple phones. They're bought because they look good (on paper) and can be paraded around in front of other techno-dweebs.

If you look at what people do on their phones, they mostly make phone calls and text each other. Everything else gets forgotten after the first week. Although, now that apple has made a lot of features hassle free, I see that balance changing. People will continue to use extended functionality long after the novelty wears off.

Hence, feature rich phones will soon be considered "functional" rather than "fashionable". The whole fashionable/functional association with features is being reversed.
post #27 of 65
Quote:
Originally Posted by addabox View Post

You know, at some point, the idea that iPhone sales are propped up by fan boys, or that sales are propped up by the fashion conscious (or that sales are propped up by the delusional, or those succumbing to the the RDF) isn't going to work anymore. As will the idea that sales are soon to take a tumble (if not here than in one of those super demanding European cell phone paradises) because of not have enough "features".

The iPhone is very popular, is selling well, appears to have good prospects, and has very high customer satisfaction ratings.

Maybe, just maybe, there are plenty of people who think the iPhone is a good value for what it does, feel that it does what they want how they want it, and continue to think so after they buy one and tell other people so.

Is that really so hard to believe? That Apple got some things really right, in an industry largely devoted to features buried under terrible UIs? And that there a lot of buyers that appreciated that? And that that is more important than one feature or another?

It doesn't have to always be smoke and mirrors or some kind of misunderstanding or an anomalous blip. Could be Apple made a phone that people want and will buy, in every larger numbers.

Actually, I think it has to be out more than the 5 months it has to actually say that it is not just fanboyism or fashion conscious people. I'm pretty sure that is was mostly the fashion conscious that pushed the RAZR to it's still #1 spot. If it's still #4 (or higher) this time next year than you have a point. Right now, I'd still say the iPhone could easily be part of the early-adopter frenzy (which could last for a while as people wait for their current contracts to end before picking up the iPhone). As the article states, even the top 10 cell phones constitute only 25% of the cell phone market. That sort of seems to indicate that iPhone sales don't have to be huge for it to make the top 10.
post #28 of 65
Downsizing the iPhone would ruin it.
post #29 of 65
I just got a samsung blackjack, the reason it's on the list is because it's 3G and dirt cheap now.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Taskiss View Post

A web site (http://www.1800mobiles.com/) claims:


Looks like they haven't updated their info yet.
post #30 of 65
Quote:
Originally Posted by aaarrrgggh View Post

The reality of the cell phone market is that there are two primary segments: functionality and fashion.

The RAZR was a bastard in terms of functionality, but it was a success in fashion. Newer Blackberries become must-haves for PHB and middle managers because they *look* so much better than the old ones. In almost none of these cases is the core functionality the incentive to purchase, or more importantly, upgrade the phone. People buy a new one because it looks better.

Clearly the fact that the RAZR is the best selling phone in history must validate this fact...

The functional market is very different; it is broken into two distinct groups - feature and anti-feature. The feature groups want the built-in microwave oven functionality, and the anti-feature group just want a damn phone that makes calls.

Where Apple has been most successful with the iPhone marketing from what I see is the group whose functional demands are minimal, fashion value high, and help to convert them into higher-end function users. That is simply good marketing. It has nothing to do with 3G, RDF, or anything else. From standing in line though, I know that the bulk of the first two weeks sales were people that would be broadly classified as fanboys. The more politically correct term would be "early adopter..."

I think the form/function thing is a real red herring, when it comes to software/hardware devices like the iPhone.

To a large extent, the iPhone is the interface. Yes, it's thin and nicely made and all, but when you look at it, your looking at the UI. In that sense, its form is it's function.

So when we talk about the iPhone being "elegant", we mean it in a different sense from, say, a pair of shoes or a bit of jewelry, which are entirely defined by their look and which is what is implied by your use of the word "fashion".

The iPhone's look derives from what it does-- large, scratch resistant surface, made as thinly as possible, with an interface designed around touch and multi-touch, with a particular emphasis on exposing functionality and cross linking same.

The interesting thing about asserting that the iPhone is being bought by people whose "functional demands are limited" (and who must therefore be buying for "fashion") is, I think, that it gets it exactly backwards.

The reason that there is such a category as "I just want a damn phone" is because many, if not most, people are aware that "features", on a cell phone, generally mean added complexity and cost without providing much benefit, because most people can't figure out how to use them.

This is a point that keeps getting dropped: most phone UIs are horrible. Yes, I know, various camps have their adherents, who swear that they have a phone that works just fine for them, but the fact is is that most people who got talked into buying phones with internet or email or media features couldn't use them if you put a gun to their head.

"I just want a damn phone" isn't some kind of inevitable stance, anymore than "I just want an email box" is an inevitable default position for any large percentage of computer users. The difference is that most people can sort out how to do a bit more than email on their computer, because the functionality is typically exposed at the top or nearly top level, whereas most phones militantly mitigate against venturing very far away from pressing the "call" button by burying functionality behind tiny buttons and nested menus. If you don't know anyone who is literally afraid to start delving into the possibilities of their phone, for fear that they will "break it", then you travel in fairly narrow circles.

At this point the conversation usually starts to recapitulate the old Windows/Mac debate, System 7 vs. Win 95 days: Macs are only easy to use because they are toys, real work requires complexity, anyone "smart" or "serious" should be able to learn how to use their tools and there is something faintly shameful in "easy".

What the iPhone does, in fact, is put things like email and the web and media playback into the hands of the "I just want a damn phone" crowd, which, for that segment, is a huge upgrade in functionality. So in that sense I think that comparing the iPhone to say, the Blackberry, and saying that it for the "less demanding" sort of misses the mark. It does ninety percent of what the Blackberry does, but in a way that people who would never dream of mastering such a "business" phone can actually relate to.

Which is, for lack of a better word, elegant.
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post #31 of 65
Quote:
Originally Posted by aegisdesign View Post

[1] Use 'Folk' in the UK and people think you're a country idiot or just stepped off the set of a costume drama. It's an old word we don't use.

"We" do use it in the UK, maybe you don't, but people around my way do. I expect its a regional thing, and your ranting about it rather deflects from the cutting point of your main rant (i.e. iPhone's lack of standard features).

Personally I think the lack of MMS is going to hit much harder in the UK than it did in the USA for example.
post #32 of 65
Quote:
Originally Posted by mdriftmeyer View Post

Downsizing the iPhone would ruin it.

Agreed!
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I don't see how an anti M$ stance can be seen as a bad thing on an Apple forum I really can't!

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post #33 of 65
Quote:
Originally Posted by aegisdesign View Post

'Folk' [1] .......

[1] Use 'Folk' in the UK and people think you're a country idiot or just stepped off the set of a costume drama. It's an old word we don't use.



I grew up speaking British English, and now, after 25 years in the US, I speak/write schizophrenic English..... you know, I vacillate (like the the to.may.to/to.mah.to thing....)
post #34 of 65
Quote:
Originally Posted by dr_lha View Post

"We" do use it in the UK, maybe you don't, but people around my way do. I expect its a regional thing, and your ranting about it rather deflects from the cutting point of your main rant (i.e. iPhone's lack of standard features).

I always thought that it was one of those 'maths' v. 'math' or 'periods' v. 'period' (that's a gender-specific reference) kind of thing.

We'll never get it resolved.......
post #35 of 65
Quote:
Originally Posted by addabox View Post

I think the form/function thing is a real red herring, when it comes to software/hardware devices like the iPhone.

To a large extent, the iPhone is the interface. Yes, it's thin and nicely made and all, but when you look at it, your looking at the UI. In that sense, its form is it's function.

So when we talk about the iPhone being "elegant", we mean it in a different sense from, say, a pair of shoes or a bit of jewelry, which are entirely defined by their look and which is what is implied by your use of the word "fashion".

The iPhone's look derives from what it does-- large, scratch resistant surface, made as thinly as possible, with an interface designed around touch and multi-touch, with a particular emphasis on exposing functionality and cross linking same.

The interesting thing about asserting that the iPhone is being bought by people whose "functional demands are limited" (and who must therefore be buying for "fashion") is, I think, that it gets it exactly backwards.

The reason that there is such a category as "I just want a damn phone" is because many, if not most, people are aware that "features", on a cell phone, generally mean added complexity and cost without providing much benefit, because most people can't figure out how to use them.

This is a point that keeps getting dropped: most phone UIs are horrible. Yes, I know, various camps have their adherents, who swear that they have a phone that works just fine for them, but the fact is is that most people who got talked into buying phones with internet or email or media features couldn't use them if you put a gun to their head.

"I just want a damn phone" isn't some kind of inevitable stance, anymore than "I just want an email box" is an inevitable default position for any large percentage of computer users. The difference is that most people can sort out how to do a bit more than email on their computer, because the functionality is typically exposed at the top or nearly top level, whereas most phones militantly mitigate against venturing very far away from pressing the "call" button by burying functionality behind tiny buttons and nested menus. If you don't know anyone who is literally afraid to start delving into the possibilities of their phone, for fear that they will "break it", then you travel in fairly narrow circles.

At this point the conversation usually starts to recapitulate the old Windows/Mac debate, System 7 vs. Win 95 days: Macs are only easy to use because they are toys, real work requires complexity, anyone "smart" or "serious" should be able to learn how to use their tools and there is something faintly shameful in "easy".

What the iPhone does, in fact, is put things like email and the web and media playback into the hands of the "I just want a damn phone" crowd, which, for that segment, is a huge upgrade in functionality. So in that sense I think that comparing the iPhone to say, the Blackberry, and saying that it for the "less demanding" sort of misses the mark. It does ninety percent of what the Blackberry does, but in a way that people who would never dream of mastering such a "business" phone can actually relate to.

Which is, for lack of a better word, elegant.

Brilliant.

(I re-posted your entire post on purpose).


(Wow -- I suppose this is an obligatory rite of passage -- but this is my millennial post! Woo-Hoo!!!! Sorry......)
post #36 of 65
I thought there would be a lot more models that would have greater than 1 to 2% market share. I guess that means that the multitude of devices have a lot lower sales volumes. Maybe it should not be a surprise because there are a ridiculous number of models from just about everyone.
post #37 of 65
Quote:
Originally Posted by extremeskater View Post

The problem is the data is always slanted. The word "potentially" is used alot on articles like this, instead of tracking an entire year they always track a good quarter.

They use a phone like the Razr that has been out forever saying sales have slowed, of course they have slowed it was the best selling phone for a long time, you can only go down from there. Its stupid.

The iPhone is a nice product, it appears to be well made, no arguement there, the issue is its still expensive compared to what most are willing to pay for a cell phone, even a smart phone in the US, not to mention the voice/data plan that needs to be purchased to take full advantage of the phone.

It's a great phone for what it does, the problem is most do not need what it does. For those that do its a good option but I never see it taking over the market. Not many families are going to buy 3-4 iPhones and spend the upfront cost not to mention the monthly cost of owning one.

Cost of ownership at least right now is still too high for the aveerage cell phone user/family.

For someone that wants one they know they want one and they want nothing else, for someone that walk into an ATT story they will be talked into something else based on price/performace.


But many of those same families have multiple computers, that cost more than the iPhone.

That's an expense they're willing to bear, because the versatility of the computer is well understood by the average family.

As it stands, "the average family" does not grasp the utility of having internet/email/media device on your person at all times, because the phones that offer those things have terrible UIs and make using those functions difficult to use, for the average person. Moreover, this kind of functionality is not yet ubiquitous enough to seem "normal" and the kind of thing an average person would want.

My contention is that the iPhone changes this, that it represents an inevitable trend in "cell phones", and that it won't be very long before having a cell phone that "just makes calls" will seem as willfully limited as having one of those "email stations" (if they even make those, anymore) that supposedly spared you the horror of booting up a computer to have email.

Everyone is (are already) going to make a strong push for this space, but I believe that Apple has gotten there first. When they designed the iPhone, I don't think they looked at other "smart phones" and tried to figure out how to compete with them. I think they thought about what "average families" might find useful to do with an always on portable device, if that functionality were genuinely easy to use. Their advertising makes this explicit-- examples and testimonials of how such a device is useful in the day to day life of "average people". Any other cell phone makers do this? Every wonder why not?

Nobody wants to spend much money on tech that doesn't seem to offer them real benefits or that does things they don't "need". But once those benefits become clear (and the culture begins to support the idea that such benefits are desirable, as in the case of internet access or having a cell phone at all), then the cost equation changes.
They spoke of the sayings and doings of their commander, the grand duke, and told stories of his kindness and irascibility.
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They spoke of the sayings and doings of their commander, the grand duke, and told stories of his kindness and irascibility.
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post #38 of 65
Quote:
Originally Posted by macinthe408 View Post

Someone please, please post that quote from the (Palm?) CEO deriding Apple's ability to just come in and change the smartphone industry overnight.

You have to expect that. He has to try to prevent users from leaving the platform, and investors from selling the stock.

It's part of his job to shore up the public image of the company.

As long as he doesn't lie about sales figures, profits, etc., it's fine.
post #39 of 65
Quote:
Originally Posted by anantksundaram View Post

With all due respect, that's nonsense.

There's form, and there's function. Apple has always combined the two well. For some, "form" might indeed be "fashion," but that's not the vast majority of people I know. Indeed, I'll venture a guess that it's not the vast majority of iPhone users.

It depends on the phone, and why it's being bought.

When I bought my old Samsung i300 color Palmphone, I bought it because of what it was, the fact that it looked pretty cool, was nice, but secondary to what it was.

The same thing is true for my Treo 700p. I didn't buy it for looks, though I think it looks fine for what it does.

But, it would be true that a greater percentage of people buyinh the iPhone are more devided on those issues.

I do think that there is the "cool" buying crowd, and that there is the It's a Mac mobile phone, iPod" buying crowd. And the "This does some amazing things that I could really need), buying crowd.
post #40 of 65
Quote:
Originally Posted by aegisdesign View Post

But people don't want to use email for sending contacts, they want to use SMS or Bluetooth. People don't use email to send contacts, normally.

But what's wrong with choice anyway? Click on 'Send' on a contact in my phone and I get asked if I want to send it via Bluetooth, Email, SMS, Infrared, Bluetooth shared and even MMS (I presume the picture for the contact is sent too if the vCard format supports it). My phone is almost 4 year old.

Do iPhones even have a 'Send Contact' button ?

That's the problem with US based phone company, US mobile phone networks are so deprived, that they don't even see half of the potential mobile phone features.
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