Archive for the 'mobile' Category

Phone sales numbers

The first thing that comes to mind when I look at the latest IDC Mobile Phone report is: who is buying all of these phones? Is cell phone turnover that high these days? Also take into account that these are just quarterly results.

Top 5
1. Nokia
2. Samsung
3. LG
4. Apple
5. Research In Motion

Despite the number shipped (110 million) Nokia is in trouble and they’ve been in trouble for a while now. The Symbian OS is flawed and it’s traditional European stronghold market is under fire from increased competition. Nokia has the most to lose. Unfortunately the good old days are over. Keep building quality phones, cut staff, and other costs, ditch Symbian, and learn to live with a smaller market share.

The biggest gains will come from Apple (obviously) as they continue to penetrate new markets and sign agreements with local carriers. They aren’t concerned so much with overall units shipped in comparison to profits. So long as they continue to sign profitable agreements with international carriers willing to bend to their will, Apple will continue their methodical approach to entering certain countries.

Research In Motion (RIM) is also looking good. While they aren’t going to be number 1 with their current phone offerings they are positioned well to stay in the top 5. The handset viewed as the business person’s smartphone is a strong competitor to the Apple iPhone. Growth should continue but not as the same rate as Apple.

Expect Samsung and LG’s numbers to drop going forward. While Samsung might hang on in the short term with the success of the Galaxy line it won’t for long. I would expect compelling handsets from HTC and Sony Ericsson to put a dent in their units shipped.

For consumers, let’s hope cheaper, non-contract phones flood the market for our hard earned money. New features, cheaper voice and data plans, and don’t forget, awesome phones.

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Tablets get wrong pricing

The success of the Apple iPad had competitors jumping into the market like hotcakes. All boasting more features, better product, and more but what it really comes down to is dollars. While all the bells and whistles may make non-Apple products attractive the pricing just isn’t right.

Pricing has always been a competitive advantage of Windows based pc’s over Apple computers. Unfortunately the numbers have not translated when it comes to tablet computing. The latest HP Slate is predicted to be priced at $799 and aimed at corporate America. That’s not even close to the same price region as the iPad. Why would I spend more on a tablet device? The features are just not compelling enough.

The next offering is the Samsung Galaxy Tab. At $499 the price is just right but hold on, it’s only a 7″ device while the iPad is 9.7″ While Samsung has a better chance at cutting into Apple’s pie it’s not a slam dunk by any means. If it was a $100 cheaper you’d see a lot more conversions.

In the grand scheme of things tablet computing is a small percentage of overall computing sales. The decision consumers have to make is whether features or pricing matters. With the prevailing economic situation it won’t be hard to see what consumers will choose.

Comparison

Is a Windows Phone on your radar?

Microsoft’s recent launch of their updated mobile OS WP7 put the spotlight on their renewed effort into the mobile field. But is it enough to lure consumers away from their iPhones, Blackberry’s, and Android phones? There’s no question there is tons of potential here. If there’s anyone willing to throw money into a development pit, it’s certainly Microsoft. Here are a few things I thought were missing that they could have done better.

Flagship. Every launch needs a flagship product. I didn’t see one. The Samsung phone? The HTC phone? I didn’t see anything that made me want to go out and suddenly own another Microsoft product.

Apps. If mobile developers have learned anything it’s that applications drive consumers to buy your product. Again this is one of those things that has potential when you have a company like Microsoft backing development.

The things that I did like. The OS. It looks very good. Smooth, different but familiar. Perhaps resource heavy? Whatever they got running it must be fairly powerful. MS office integration. If it’s a Microsoft product you gotta have integration of MS Office. That’s one thing it has over other mobile OS’s.

It could take off over the holiday shopping season. Perhaps Steve Balmer has something else up his sleeve?

No More Crazy Phone Bills

This is good news. The FCC is hoping to make some changes for the benefit of cell phone consumers. If they get their way then the shocking bill will be a thing of the past. Suggestions so far are along the lines of text messages warning you when your data plan is over the cap, roaming on another network, and clear definitions of the charges you are racking while continuing to talk to your friends. The end of thousand dollar cell phone bill? Probably not. If these features are implemented there will still be some moron who claims ignorance, then goes and makes a youtube video about their bill. Surfing the net on your phone while in a different country? Making local calls on vacation? Heck even making long distance calls when you don’t have any LD minutes included in your plan. Use wifi people, it’s everywhere. Also, use your brain to think. There is no app for that.

Rogers 4g soon?

Freshly off a successful 3g launch last year and happy customers Rogers is focusing on the next gen speed of communication. The company has begun 4g testing of their LTE network in the Ottawa area. So does this mean Rogers 4g service is just around the corner? They are staying mum so far but one would expect if they are, there will be a big fuss over it.

Bell also let it be known that they have been testing their 4g network since early summer. They also let it slip that they expect service to be available in 2012. Either way both of these wireless carriers will be pushing to be first for bragging rights.

4g has had limited success in the US but faster is faster right? No need to start researching 4g phones just yet. It looks like 4g launch is still a long ways away.

RIM wins reprieve

To ban or not to ban. Well for UAE mobile users it looks like you are in the clear for now. The Oct. 11 deadline to ban all RIM based phone communications has now been called off. According to sources an agreement has been worked out to satisfy both sides. My guess is that a temporary solution is working as a proof of concept and putting the necessary hardware in place is in the works. So looks like the 500,000 Blackberry users will be able to continue to happily message away with the UAE government/RIM monitoring conversations. Governments accessing corporate data is going to open a whole new can of worms. Get ready for a few months of economic instability once a few corrupt government employees get their hands on inside information and start making big stock market bets. Let the data leaks begin!

Mobile News

Someone at Samsung must be smiling. The Galaxy S is set to pass 5 million units sold worldwide AND it hasn’t even found its way to Japan yet. Is there any other phone that will derail this train? I guess this Android thing is for real. Now if only they could speed up production on that tablet.

From its days hovering around bankruptcy to snubbing Microsoft. Motorola has gotten all snooty when it comes to shipping a phone with a Windows Mobile OS. While they haven’t said ‘no’ to anything just yet, they are open to the idea of working with Microsoft, so long as the mobile OS is a piece of crap.

Who is this Huawei? Making no name phones and showing up at my cell phone provider’s booths? What are the odds that one of their handsets is actually good? The Huawei Ascend just might be that one phone. Sporting Android 2.1, 3.2 megapixel camera, and other features is a nice cheap introduction to the no name company.


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