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iPhone closes on Palm share as RIM looms

updated 02:20 pm EDT, Tue August 5, 2008

iPhone Closing in on Palm

Apple's iPhone user base is likely to have surpassed Palm in earnest with the iPhone 3G launch but will face a serious threat by BlackBerry creator Research in Motion shortly afterwards, says a new ChangeWave study. A poll of over 3,500 home users in June showed Apple climbing to 11 percent of active users, up significantly from nine percent in March. The statistic is just three percent below Palm's 14 percent share of current users and on its current trend would have Apple edge out Palm by the researchers' next report.

The iPhone 3G introduction made predicting future purchases difficult for the study. The survey's timing between the announcement of the new iPhone and its July 11th ship date immediately put it at the top of future device purchases for the 90-day period ahead. However, Apple's heavily publicized one million iPhone 3G sales on its launch weekend alone are expected to significantly alter the results.

This may be challenged by the release of future BlackBerry phones, ChangeWave cautions. Of those looking to buy a smartphone in the near future, about four percent were "very likely" to buy the BlackBerry Bold keyboard-equipped smartphone, while two percent each were equally likely to buy the touchscreen Thunder or entry-level Kickstart flip phone. The percentages are likely to change with official launches but could create a "powerful counteroffensive" for RIM as it claws back interest in its own devices, the analysts predict.

Neither Apple nor RIM is expected to suffer significantly from each other's moves. The two are instead though to be stealing user share from smaller players in the smartphone industry such as Motorola, Palm and Samsung, whose devices now have less influence in the market than either BlackBerries or iPhones.

"The real losers in this smart phone battle will most likely be the second-tier players, who could find themselves increasingly pushed to the sidelines as the two Goliaths battle for market dominance," says ChangeWave originator Tobin Smith.

The study also foresees few existing owners of either an Apple or RIM device converting away from their choices, with BlackBerry owners two to three times more likely to buy a replacement while Apple users are the least likely of any smartphone owner to buy a BlackBerry device.

by MacNN Staff



  1. climacs

    Joined: Dec 1969


    buh bye palm

    you'll soon join the high-tech trash heap

  1. chefpastry

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Few iPhone defectors

    I honestly feel that anyone who's ever really used the iPhone would not want to defect to anything else. It has the best UI by far and everything works fluidly.

  1. vasic

    Joined: Dec 1969


    RIM holding steady

    If we look at 2008, it is clear that RIM is no longer gaining market share. And for June report, even with the complete unavailability of iPhone for two out of three months there, it still gained share against Palm. There is no question, September data will be a watershed event. We should clearly see RIMM's steep drop (forget about Palm). I am confident that by the time iPhone 3.0 arrives next June (or July), RIMM will be desperately trying to stay relevant (even with all the enterprise clients out there).

  1. luckyday

    Joined: Dec 1969



    You are truly a genius when it comes to business and market share. What are your credentials? Pretty good chance that apple is going to come along and completely take over the market leaving no competitor in sight.

    Last time I checked iphone 2.0 got only decent reviews, without much improvement, and still can't perform basic functions like copy and paste and MMS. Oh ya.. mobile me... that's the reliability a business requires.

  1. graymccarty

    Joined: Dec 1969



    why does everyone refer to RIM as RIMM? There's no extra M

  1. slapppy

    Joined: Dec 1969



    They are scared to death. Look at what they are trying to produce as fast as they can. I bet they are cutting corners like crazy.

  1. bfalchuk

    Joined: Dec 1969



    graymccarthy, RIMM is RIM's stock symbol. Some people equally say APPL for Apple. However, I think this is a case of misspelling/stupidity

  1. ZinkDifferent

    Joined: Dec 1969


    i love luckyday...

    ...almost as funny as testudo, but not quite.

    Looking forward to serving him Crow Cocktail by next year --- because the iPhone has done so terribly so far, with the lack of MMS or copy and paste.

    C P is coming, it's one of the things Apple hasn't gotten around to yet - quite simply, and MMS never will. Why? Because there's a thing called 'email' - you might have heard about it.

  1. luckyday

    Joined: Dec 1969



    They haven't gotten around to copy and paste? That's your answer? You don't think that's a key function? It existed on my old Razr from 2004, which had a screen that could only fit 6 or 7 lines. But apple hasn't gotten around to it?

    And last time I checked you couldn't send an email to a substantial majority of the cell phones on the market.

    Oh ya, I love you too.

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