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Droid’s Opening Weekend Solid, But Not in iPhone Territory

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Unless you’ve been hiding under a rock for the past several weeks, you’ve no doubt been bombarded with the heavy marketing surrounding the new Droid smartphone. Today, TheAppleBlog has a good analysis of the first weekend of sales for the Droid — in which 100,000 units moved — compared with the weekend openings of the iPhone, the iPhone 3G, the iPhone 3GS, and the Palm Pre. In short, the Droid did well, but nowhere near the iPhone releases. The numbers are collected in the chart below. Check Stacey’s thoughts from earlier today as well as TheAppleBlog’s analysis here.


15 Responses to “Droid’s Opening Weekend Solid, But Not in iPhone Territory”

  1. Anonymous

    I went looking for Droid plans on VZW’s website. Unlimited data plan costs $40 (versus $30 for iPhone from AT&T). You can’t get iPhone without a data plan where as Verizon charges $1.99 per MB. You have only one choice of all you can eat messaging at VZW for $20. AT&T offers 200 msgs for $5, 1500 for $15, unlimited for $20.

    So, all in all, one would have to spend $10 more on VZW per month for the “Superior 3G Coverage” data plan!!!

  2. But it is interesting how each time the latest iPhone killer comes out there is always speculation and hope that it’s sales will match or come close to those of the iPhone. It’s only after it falls far short that we start hearing about how unfair the comparison is, and how of course there was never any expectation of matching the iPhone and anyway it’s all about the platform.

    • If iPhone-like sales were expected, there would have been much more than 200,000 units produced for the launch of this device. So no, they didn’t expect that kind of turnout.

  3. I absolutely agree that many of these tech sites are not comparing the sales numbers fairly. The 3GS sold in multiple countries, on multiple carriers yet keeps getting mentioned with this launch of the Droid. Another site compared 30K iPhones sold in one day on a new carrier in Europe, failing to acknowledge Apple’s 2.5 year marketing headstart and cultish following before there ever was an iPhone. I myself have high hopes for this phone but never expected iPhone-like lines and I’m sure neither did Verizon, Motorola or Google (although it certainly would have been welcomed) for the very valid reasons mentioned in earlier posts.

    Somewhat off topic, but I’m often amazed at how Apple, Google and Verzion are almost exclusively referenced in this smartphone battle. Lost are AT&T and Motorola, almost a afterthought. They both need to step up efforts in getting their brands mentioned in a positive manner in regard to their respective phone.

  4. It’s hard to compare the two. The iPhone was extremely popular when it was first introduced since it was the only phone in the market with those features. Times have changed and there are certainly more options out there for people to choose, which will result in more muted sales figures. I also wonder how many of the iPhone sales figures are from people upgrading their old iPhones to the newer 3G and 3GS versions?

    I haven’t purchased the Droid as of yet, since I need international capabilities, which Verizon doesn’t offer on the Droid. I’ll probably upgrade to it from my Palm once I work around the GSM issue.

    The reviews have been very favorable for both…I just want a larger screen with a key board. Of course people have voice concern over the keyboard, but I’m not worried. I can use the touch screen keyboard that they offer or return the phone in 30 days.

  5. Shaquille Ruben

    Terrible comparison. To put it in 1990 perspective his is like going back to comparing first weekend sales of Apple Macintosh to first weekend sales of “IBM” PCs running *Microsoft Windows 3.0*. The point is not that IBM is better or worse than Apple, but that *Microsoft* is poised for long term dominance.

    Google Android is the Ipod Killer, not Verizon Droid.

  6. @Curtis–the length of the marketing campaigns is an interesting point to make. I’m actually cross-posting to various analyses here in this post, and definitely not writing the Droid’s prospects off. As the post says, the Droid is already doing well. In addition, I believe Android’s prospects in general stretch as far as the eye can see–have written that many times. This cross-post is a snapshot of initial numbers, and I continue to think watching Android phones and the iPhone compete will be one of the most interesting mobile face-offs in memory.


  7. Another +1 for Curtis and his peers above. A lot of ink gets spilled on whether any given phone can rise up in a week’s time and slay the phone which redefined the category – despite a 2.5 year head start. The Android *platform* will be hugely successful – even if they never poach a single iPhone user away.

    There are plenty of intangibles in this equation that have nothing to do with hardware too. (haters of AT&T, Apple, iTunes App store, etc etc.).

  8. @Sebastian,

    Each analysis you reference is flawed as Verizon began its’ Droid campaign on October 18th, some 3 weeks before the Droid was launched. No one was aware such launch was imminent. By contrast, Apple announced the iPhone about 9 months before its’ initial launch and began its’ marketing and PR campaigns immediately. The iPhone 3G and the iPhone 3GS had advanced announcements and marketing which built upon the aggregate marketing and PR of the original iPhone. Hence, you (and the others) are comparing apples and oranges as any good marketing campaign is measured over time and the campaigns of Apple’s versus Verizon’s have vastly different timelines.

    This post and the others are simply nonsense and lack critical thinking.

    My $.02.

    • The facts are The Facts.

      Verizon sells the Motorola Droid and it doesn’t matter if they marketed the heck out of it or they did no marketing, the sales results are the results – there shouldn’t be an asterisk.

      I personally don’t think the initial weekend sales results are all that interesting. First, they aren’t results but they are one analysts estimates. Until Verizon and/or Motorola officially announce sales then it’s all wild speculation and I don’t put much faith in the numbers. Second, the it is the weaker competitors that will fall to the strong. I don’t think the iPhone has much to worry about because it is in a very strong position. WinMo, Palm, Nokia, Maybe RIM should fear the Droid.

    • ProfessionalGun

      Well said, Curtis.

      Headlines and “analysis” like this are purely annoying. And comparing phones is a flawed practice here, anyway. This competition is platform based. Android devices are happening all over the place – which feeds the developer community – which feeds the Android Market – which feeds the value proposition for consumers.

      To compare phone sales to phone sales is ridiculous. This game is about platform saturation.