Blog Post

iPhone Still Leads the Superphone Derby

The consumer love affair with Apple’s (s aapl) iPhone shows no signs of ending. Three days after launching the iPhone 3G S, the company sold more than a million units, Cupertino said today, on par with the number of iPhone 3Gs sold within the first three days of that device being launched. In comparison, it took some 74 days to sell a million of the original iPhones. Overall, Apple is expected to sell about 5 million phones in this quarter.

On the surface, it seems that the success of the new iPhone is going to make life a little tough for all the other superphones that have either launched or are about to launch this summer. But the reality might be a little different. A survey by Piper Jaffrey shows that nearly 56 percent iPhone 3G S buyers were upgrading from the old device and only 28 percent were switching to AT&T (s t), down from 38 percent last year and 52 percent in 2007. I think the drop can be explained by the availability of better superphones on different networks, such as the Palm (s palm) Pre on Sprint (s s) and the new Google (s goog) phone (myTouch) on T-Mobile, as well as RIM’s (s rimm) BlackBerry, which continues to do well on Verizon (s vz) and other networks. Though from AT&T’s perspective, 56 percent of people re-upping their contracts is a bonus — at least they’re not losing them as customers. As growth in the mobile market continues to slow, that’s almost as good as having people switch over to them.

The best stat pertaining to the iPhone 3G S came via a tweet from my friend Ouriel Ohayon: The device has become the most popular camera (including camera phones) in the Flickr community. It is also the top camera phone used to take and upload photos to Flickr.

12 Responses to “iPhone Still Leads the Superphone Derby”

  1. Why are not more people moving to GSM?
    Of course is it impossible for the other carriers to offer a similar device. The rest of the world have used “Superphones” the last 10 years..

  2. Me thinks Joe has an issue with Om. :) Lighten up, Joe; there is so much more to life than Om calling the iPhone a “Superphone” — who cares? Enjoy your day, Joe! Do something good for someone today and have peace at heart. :)

  3. Another take is that the pool of people who are willing to switch to ATT for any reason is dwindling. Looking at it that way, 28% is still pretty impressive!

    Until ATT is ready to match other carriers worldwide (who support MMS and tethering day-and-date) and until they are ready to support faster speeds and the load that comes with iPhone, they may not really deserve it. Not to mention paying 50% more for unlimited voice/text/data than on Sprint. I know many folks who’d have long ago been iPhone users if not for those issues, switching from other carriers.

    Imagine iPhone sales in a parallel universe where you can now get it on any US carrier…

  4. I wonder why folks won’t take into account of the returns , and upgrades.

    I know someone who bought the previous version and is planning on returning it in 30 days time.

    But he ordered his 3GS already and will return the older one once he gets 3GS.

    So there should be a separate returns count for all the folks who bought it it last 30 days or so.

  5. Stop using the term “superphone”. No one uses it except you Om, and the originator of the term over at Zumobi. It just makes you sound like an idiot.

    The word is “smartphone”. Get with the program, Om.

  6. only 28 percent were switching to AT&T, down from 38 percent last year…I think the drop can be explained by the availability of better superphones on different networks, such as the Palm Pre on Sprint and the new Google phone (myTouch) on T-Mobile, as well as RIM’s BlackBerry, which continues to do well on Verizon and other networks.

    I have to hand it to you, there’s just no limits to the creativity of you Apple hating Microsoft shills.