What was the top selling smartphone in the first quarter of this year? If you guess the iPhone, you’d be wrong, according to the latest “Smartphone Market Update” report from NPD Group. While it was on the top of the heap in the last quarter of last year, the iPhone has been overtaken by the BlackBerry Curve in the United States. The Research in Motion smartphone has had a surge, likely brought on a by a “buy one, get one free” promotion from carrier Verizon.
Verizon’s promotion meant that the RIM BlackBerry Curve threw the market for a major curve ball and took nearly 50 percent of the market. Of course, the question will be whether Verizon will put a similar spin in play next year when it brings out the first non-AT&T iPhone. And since Verizon will have two models in play, that two for one deal could certainly put a nice curve on it!
Rounding out the top five best-selling consumer smartphones in the U.S. are:
- RIM BlackBerry Curve (all 83XX models)
- Apple iPhone 3G (all models)
- RIM BlackBerry Storm
- RIM BlackBerry Pearl (all models, except flip)
- T-Mobile G1
Mobile Advertising: Time to do a Re-organization?
Mobile advertisers are feeling the economic woes, and according to a new report from Magna, the market could be susceptible to the cuts and slowed growth already seen online in the past quarters. But there is a silver lining in this gray cloud. According to a story from ClickZ, mobile advertising could see major re-acceleration in 2010 as apps and other mobile platforms take off.
Magna, the media-forecasting unit of Mediabrands, further suggests that the growth will be brought on by apps for the iPhone, as well as for BlackBerry handsets, and those powered by the Google Android OS. And let’s not forget that a number of other companies, including Microsoft are in the wings with their own app offerings.
In fact, Magna expects that spending in mobile advertising could increase by 36 percent, from $169 million to $229 million. That means a lot of advertising, it also means that content on mobile phones could get richer, and more importantly could remain free to view. While ads might be somewhat intrusive to some viewers, ads do ensure that the price to view and use the content often remains free or nearly free.
iPhone to Break Out?
So will the iPhone users get a “break out of jail free” card? That’s the debate currently being waged right now. Later this week Greg Joswiak, vice president of iPod and iPhone product marketing, will testify to the United States Copyright Office in the first in a series of hearings on possible exemptions to the nation’s copyright law. At stake is whether there would be an exemption to the U.S. Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) that would permit so called “jailbreaking.”
Apple will be further supported by Fenwick & West intellectual property lawyer David Hayes to represent it at the hearing, and according to the filed legal brief (27 pages I should add), the argument is that legalizing jailbreaking would lead to “copyright infringement, potential damage to the device and other potential harmful physical effects, adverse effects on the functioning of the device, and breach of contract.”