More reasons Apple should release a Verizon iPhone soon

NPD mobile stats.

A few days back I wrote about the impetus for a Verizon iPhone launch in early 2011, mostly citing John Gruber from Daring Fireball. NPD just gave us a little information that could very well serve as more evidence of the impending release. The iOS market is actually shrinking, while Android is exploding. You don’t have to be a genius to see how a Verizon iPhone could change that, or at least help Apple’s position.

It’s not that Apple isn’t doing well – its market cap proves that it is – but Android is on so many more handsets now. From Peter Kafka at AllThingsD:

So how did Android gain share? Because it’s on so many other new phones. Canned quote from NPD’s Ross Rubin: “The HTC EVO 4G, Motorola Droid X, and other new high-end Android devices have been gaining momentum at carriers that traditionally have been strong RIM distributors, and the recent introduction of the BlackBerry Torch has done little to stem the tide.”

What does tomorrow mean for Apple?

Moscone Center WWDC 2010.

Tomorrow marks yet another Apple WWDC. Another day surrounded by the anticipation of a new iPhone. I expect this year is more than a landmark hardware launch, though. This will likely be the year Apple makes a serious attempt at the cloud, an area of the market where Apple is starting to fall seriously behind Google and the Android OS.

First off, the new iPhone is a big deal, not just for us but for Apple as well. The phone leak was so big to Apple, in fact, that it refused to invite Gizmodo to the event in light of the investigation. The newest iteration of the iPhone will be the most advanced phone to market. Though we don’t know specifics, it looks as though the phone will support video conferencing, capture HD video, offer a faster processor, more memory, and of course, iPhone OS 4.

It’s OS 4 that will help Apple catch up to Android. The latest Android updates include support for streaming music from your desktop to your phone. It also allows you to push websites, applications, and maps and directions straight to your phone. Apple and the iPhone are way behind in cloud support. The best you have there is MobileMe, which requires a subscription and really only allows you to find your phone if you lose it. Apple’s Lala acquisition could mean good things here.

The one thing you shouldn’t expect tomorrow is a Verizon iPhone. Though we’ve heard rumors since the iPhone launched, it’s unlikely we’ll see anything this year, or even next. I was wholly convinced that we’d get a Verizon phone around the time my 3GS contract expired but recent Verizon comments have made it clear we won’t see one soon.

On the whole, tomorrow is Apple’s chance to position itself in the market. When the 3GS launched it was clearly the best phone on the market. Things aren’t so clear anymore, and the Android devices coming in the near future hold a lot of advantages for tech-savvy buyers. It’s going to take a lot for Apple to outperform the latest version of Android. We’ll see if they have it when Jobs takes the stage for the keynote at 10 PST tomorrow.

Photo Credit: Adam Jackson / Flickr

The mobile world is Google’s oyster

Android.

I’ve spent most of my tech reading time over the past few days reviewing the world’s reactions to Google I/O. Google announced some pretty cool stuff for Android, and the company clearly has Apple in its sights when it comes to market share. Even more interesting to me, though, was that the “Microsoft” didn’t seem to be on anyone’s mind. John Gruber put together a great read on the subject, so I’ll defer to him here.

As Gruber sees it, Google is taking its gigantic, Android-shaped bite out of Microsoft’s pie, not Apple’s. Google is the licensed OS player because it licenses Android for free, not on a fee-per-unit basis. That says nothing of Microsoft’s crazy volume requirements to turn a profit. The company currently charges something between $8 and $12 per handset. When you hold just 6.8 percent of the world market share, that license fee is a joke.

The volume game isn’t necessarily where you find the profits, either. Nokia sells a LOT more units than Apple, but Apple still makes a better profit. Microsoft is in an absolutely awful position to make a dent in the market. Hell, they still haven’t even launched a competitive platform. Microsoft was already too late when the iPhone launched three years ago. I have to thank John Gruber for this Ballmer quote about the iPhone launch, which I had never seen before:

“There’s no chance that the iPhone is going to get any significant market share. No chance. It’s a $500 subsidized item. They may make a lot of money. But if you actually take a look at the 1.3 billion phones that get sold, I’d prefer to have our software in 60 percent or 70 percent or 80 percent of them, than I would to have 2 percent or 3 percent, which is what Apple might get.”

Well, Steve, I have bad news. The iPhone OS was just reported at 15.2 percent of the global market share. That 80 percent market share you were hoping for? Yeah, that’s never going to happen.

Source: Daring Fireball

Android passes US iPhone web traffic

iPhone vs the Android platform.According to the most recent AdMob stats, the Android platform has surpassed the iPhone’s web traffic in the US for the month of March. It’s a strange statistic, considering that AdMob is one, in the process of being picked up by Google and, two, reporting data based on ad traffic. I’m not trying to suggest that Android users are bigger suckers than their iPhone-toting counterparts, but it isn’t exactly the most accurate method on earth for analyzing web traffic.

Still, it is a method – probably the best we have – and by that method Android has pulled ahead. The iPhone is still ahead worldwide, but while it may see a domestic jump this June with the launch of the new iPhone, I can’t help feeling like Android will keep gaining ground. A lot of people really love the departure from the Apple platform, and I don’t think that’s likely to change with new iPhone hardware. There’s also the simple matter of variety – Android has it, the iPhone doesn’t. If you like the iPhone OS but don’t like the hardware, tough shit. With Android you at least have some options.

Source: Business Wire

Analyst suggests iPhone users have Stockholm Syndrome

Apple fanboy.Do you ever find yourself wishing you had one of these Apple swimsuits? Are you the annoying guy that defends Apple’s every action? Has your iPhone turned you against other phone manufacturer’s despite its technical shortcomings? If so, you might be suffering form iPhone-induced Stockholm Syndrome, according to Strand Consulting.

The firm released a report entitled, ““How will psychologists describe the iPhone syndrome in the future?” this Friday, and it’s a decidedly strange read. The report opens with an anecdote just about everyone can agree with: “It is no secret that there has been a great deal of hype surrounding the iPhone and it is also no secret that Apple probably has the most loyal and fantastic customers in the world.” From there Strand posits that iPhone customers look past the phone’s shortcomings and go on to defend the worst parts of the device to the phone’s critics.

“When we examine the iPhone users’ arguments defending the iPhone, it reminds us of the famous Stockholm Syndrome – a term that was invented by psychologists after a hostage drama in Stockholm. Here hostages reacted to the psychological pressure they were experiencing, by defending the people that had held them hostage for 6 days,” reads the report.

It’s definitely a different take on what most people write off as fanboyism. You have to wonder, though, what you would call the fact that millions of cellular customers continue to purchase and pay for phones and services they are unhappy with. Bearing that in mind, it’s tough to fault anyone for defending one of the best phones on the market. Or is that just my SS flaring up?

Source: 9to5 Mac