By Richard Menta 6/16/07
Steve Jobs stated at the unveiling of the iPhone that their goal is to capture 1% of the market by the end of 2008. If the recent poll by M:Metrics is accurate then Apple's new phone will blow past that figure before this year is up.
According to the poll, which was released on Friday and surveyed 11,060 U.S. mobile subscribers, in the US 9% of cell phone users have strong interest in buying the iPhone. That figure was even stronger in the UK where 16% of 5,293 mobile subscribers said they had strong interest. "This data confirms that the iPhone has sparked the imaginations of consumers and is not merely a topic of conversation among insiders and technology enthusiasts," SVP M:Metrics Mark Donovan stated in the company press release.
Said senior analyst said Paul Goode "It's also interesting to note that
in both geographies, 64 percent of those with a strong interest in buying an
iPhone already own an MP3 player, compared to a market average of 30 percent
for other music phones owners, so it will be interesting to see at what rate
consumers replace their digital music player with an iPhone."
Goode's comments are critical, because if consumers indeed shift from DAPs to DAP-enabled phones over the next few years the iPhone will turn out to be a key strategic move for Apple. The iPhone and other music phones are significantly bigger and heavier than straight audio players like the iPod shuffle and nano, so it is unlikely they will completely replace them. Still, 9% of a 1 billion unit market is 90 million iPhones. There have been 99,250,000 iPods sold since its introduction in Q1 of 2002 so if this percentage hold accurate iPhones can equal the iPod market fairly quickly. Remember, these are the subscribers who have strong interest in the iPhone today. That percentage could increase (or decrease) once the handset is used under real world conditions.
Will there be an iPhone shortage? In the short run probably, but we suspected
that well before this poll was released. Explosive demand will only be met eventually
with increased production. It will also lead to a quicker release of new model
iPods that fall well under the $500 Apple is asking for this original iPhone.
When that happens even more users will seriously consider purchasing one and
that is only good news for AT&T who is the exclusive service provider for
the next 5 years.
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