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BlackBerry, Palm take iPhone marketshare

updated 01:35 am EDT, Sun June 1, 2008

iPhone Share Down in Q1

The iPhone's marketshare took a significant drop in marketshare over the first three months of 2008, says new research data from IDC. The handset dropped from its more than a quarter of all US smartphone sales">strong fourth quarter share of an estimated 26.7 percent to a significantly lower 19.2 percent for the first calendar quarter of 2008. Analysts at IDC don't specifically attribute the shift to any Apple weakness but instead suggest that close rivals, particularly Palm and Research in Motion (RIM), were able to increase their own share through important changes to their phone catalogs.

RIM jumped from 35.1 to 44.5 percent between the fourth and first quarters largely through further expansions of its BlackBerry range into the high-end home user market, which is still relatively new to the originally business-oriented company. Palm in turn raised its share from 7.9 percent to 13.4 percent based largely on sales of the Centro, which is considered one of the least expensive new smartphones on sale in the US and is targeted at first-time as well as price-conscious users trading up from comparatively limited devices.

Samsung also saw a small but significant gain from 5.1 percent to 8.6 percent, largely based on increased access to its Windows Mobile-based smartphones at Verizon. Motorola was the only manufacturer of the larger firms outside of Apple to have lost consecutive share, earning just a third of its earlier influence as it dropped from 7.5 percent to 2.6 percent. The RAZR creator is in the midst of splitting off its mobile business in a major bid to reorganize and save the group after several consecutive quarters of falling phone sales and lackluster products.

However, nearly all the companies in the market for more than the past year also saw year-over-year losses that are directly attributed by IDC to the iPhone's existence in the marketplace, suggesting a longer-term impact on their results. RIM dropped from a near-record 48.7 percent share, while Palm tumbled from 23 percent in early 2007 to nearly half as much in early 2008.

These numbers are expected to shift dramatically in the summer quarter between July and September, when both RIM's BlackBerry Bold and Apple's 3G-capable iPhone will be widely available through AT&T and are commonly expected to pull customers from other handset manufacturers. For both companies, the addition of 3G cellular Internet access for HSPA networks to their smartphones has been considered essential for wider adoption by customers anxious about slow data speeds.

by MacNN Staff



  1. tomodachi

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Good ol' good ol'

    The first sentence would have you believe the iPhone share nose dive was more down to the single-digit range. Obviously Q4 2007 was going to show exceptionally high market share for the iPhone since it had only been recently released. If it plateaued to around 20%, then really, that's not that bad at all. If Q2 2008 was more or less the same, then I'd say that's fantastic for Apple cuz Q3/Q4 '08 is gonna be huge again with the 3G iPhone ;-)

  1. neondiet

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Duh uh !

    Have the people at IDC been living in a cave for the past 6 weeks? iPhone share is down because Apple have been starving the inventory channel, and you haven't been able to buy one.

    My experience is typical. My iPhone took an unexpected bath 4 weeks ago and didn't recover. I live in the UK and tried to get an 8GB replacement, but everywhere was sold out. I gave up in the end, brought myself the cheapest Nokia I could find and now I'm waiting for the 3G iPhone release.

  1. Constable Odo

    Joined: Dec 1969


    This will make the

    iPhone look all that much better when its market share explodes in the next two quarters. Imagine being concerned about Palm taking market share. They're going to get their coffin nailed by the 3G iPhone. RIM will definitely be a tough competitor, but the remainder of those smartphone manufacturers are dead meat.

  1. Guest

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Q1, not Q2

    There were no shortages in Q1, and it was well known Apple's sales appear more sensitive to the recession than other companies.

    Apple sold 26% less phones in Q1 2008 vs Q4 2007, when the market itself only fell 14%

    With rocketing fuel prices and a tight credit environment, the 3G iPhone may be quite a bust, especially if its not subsidised.

  1. Guest

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Rocketing fuel prices?

    ^ What are you smoking? Go back to your daytrading of penny stocks.

  1. jscotta

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Apple and Recession

    Guest (Q1 not Q2), what are you talking about?

    "…it is well known Apple's sales appear more sensitive to recession…"

    You must be a new follower or don't follow at Apple market, at all. The biggest impact on Apple unit sales (and thus market share with all other things being equal) is when people stop their buying in anticipation of a new or an upgraded product. I personally know of quite a few people that are holding off buying an iPhone now because they want the new one rumored to be on the way.

    How does, "…rocketing fuel prices…" matter to the iPhone? The vast majority of people buying any of the high-end phones are well-heeled business and social buyers. They don't care a whit about fuel moving up a bit.

  1. bobolicious

    Joined: Dec 1969


    I don't know about others

    ...but I'm still using an old beater held together with epoxy while waiting for the iphone to arrive in our market - blackberry isn't even a consideration for me...

  1. MiMiC

    Joined: Dec 1969


    The BIG ifs

    IF the iPhone gets...GPSAbility to store filesAbility to send stored filesAbility to save attachmentsAbility to send contactsAbility to send calendar appointmentsAbility to print from deviceAbility to cut and pasteAbility to send webpages (or links)iChat

    Comment buried. Show
  1. testudo

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Re: the big ifs

    don't you understand, those features you mention are just fluff. Apple knows that what makes a great device in not overloading it with garbage, because that will just make it unusable (yeah, I haven't quite figured out how anything you mention would make it more unusable, apparently Apple can't figure out how to hide complexity or something). So Apple kept the iPhone simple so people could do with it what it was designed for, surfing the web. No, wait, its to run 3rd-party programs! No, that's not it. What was it again? Oh, right, it's supposed to be a phone.

  1. luckyday

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Ok buddy

    Ya, all buyers of apple products don't care about their personal finances and higher commodity prices. Good one.

    The iphone isn't a business phone. Its a toy. People buy less toys when they have less disposable income.

    Maybe one day the iphone will be supported by businesses. But that will be the same day all you guys and girls stop using them. The apple paradox...

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