updated 10:05 am EST, Fri March 7, 2008
Piper: iPhone confidence
Apple's press event yesterday inspires greater confidence in the company's sales targets for 2008, say analysts with Piper Jaffray. The research group notes that it is particularly excited by the prospect of the SDK and the App Store, which, come June, should liberate iPhone users from the restrictions and speeds of current web-based applications. Piper describes the new iPhone as a "full-fledged mobile computing platform," and expects Apple to follow up with a "full family" of Internet-capable devices going into the future.
The analysts comment that Apple may be eager to avoid the problem it had during the 1980s, when there was no firm developer community for the Mac. The mobile platform with the most active development arena will probably win, Piper argues, although Apple may need to drive down prices.
Contributing to optimistic prospects for Apple is the addition of ActiveSync support, enabling links with enterprise mail, contacts and calendars. This should put the iPhone into more direct competition with Windows Mobile devices, as well as Research in Motion's BlackBerries, which virtually control the business phone market. Price is again said to be a major concern, as even many BlackBerries are not as expensive as the $399 iPhone. Piper says it nevertheless expects Apple to reach its goal of 10 million iPhone sold in 2008.