Thursday, October 30, 2008

Trend Shows Bright Future for Mobile Devices

The original title for this post was "iPhone: The Poor In the US Are Rich" because it was going to be only about a post about lower-income mobile warriors adopting iPhone at a much faster clip than the average folks.  But I realized it's more than that.

According to the Wall Street Journal, folks who earn less than the medium income are leading the way in adopting the iPhone.
Frankly, I'm not surprise.  Not just the iPhone, but I would like to know the  income data for smartphones and other mobile devices.  In these tough economic times, we seek to maximize the value of our income.  Recently, a survey of Canadian and American consumers ranked wireless services as one of the last things they are willing to let go.

With wireless services now nearly as important as utilities, it's no wonder people are looking for a device and service that let them do it all, even if is a small premium.

Here are some data to chew on:

  • Mobile warriors earning $25K-$50K who adopted the iPhone grew 16% versus the average of the group at 12%.
  • The same group also increased mobile Internet usage by 5% versus 2.7% for the masses.
  • Survey was for the summer months and involved close to 34,000 phone users.  This is a much better sampling than Presidential polls are taken.
So, why would I want to see data for other phones?  Well, we are on the cusp of a fundamental change: people ditch their standard phones for devices that can do it all.  Basically, we are transformed from a society used phones to stay in touch to one that wants to be mobile and requires our mobile devices to function beyond making calls.

It is for this reason that I am confident that if we get a chance to examine purchasing data for devices similar to the iPhone, we will find a similar trend.  
  • People want a mobile computing devices that makes calls.  Not phones that tries to do other mobile functions.
  • Simplicity.  No hacking required or any other form of tinkering.  It just works out of the box.
  • High speed.  I don't think the iPhone, despite being only $199, will be as success if not for the fast wireless connection.
  • If it works as advertised, a small premium is tolerated.
What we're seeing in mobile convergence of functionalities, simplicity, and design.  Onxo has talked about this in the past and we're happy to see it happening.  The iPhone and some of the other devices like the G1 and Storm are a good first step.  

Now, we want more.


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