iPhone gets thumbs up from geeks even before launch

28 May 2007

Some 90pc of mobile phone owners polled by Strategy Analytics Wireless Device Labs think the iPhone is better than their own phone, even though they have never seen, never mind touched, the much lusted after Apple handset.

While a staggering 90pc of those surveyed felt the iPhone was superior in general, 40pc actually rated it higher across certain categories, including photos, voice mail, music and web browsing.

“While the iPhone ‘wow’ factor is impressive, our user panel indicated that challenges in pricing and positioning may act as a barrier to mass market success,” said Kevin Nolan, director of user experience research at Strategy Analytics. “Nonetheless, the iPhone clearly represents a breakthrough in terms of user experience.”

It has been pointed out that the iPhone essentially doesn’t do anything new that an existing smart phone can’t but its appeal lies in Apple’s “must have” factor which is attached to all products, especially since the iPod was released in October 2001.

Apple plans to take a 1pc share of the mobile phone market, which will mean shipping about 10 million units within its first year.

The hype for the long-awaited iPhone can be traced back to even before Steve Jobs gave a live video demonstration at Macworld in January this year.

Some overly enthusiastic fans of Apple have even been known to construct mock-up iPhone packaging and make videos showing them unboxing their iPhone step by step.

A search on Google for the phrase “ipod lust” returns 3,190 results. On the other hand, one of the world’s best-selling handsets, racking up sales of over 200 million since its launch in 2003, the Nokia 1100 doesn’t elicit the same excitement.

There are a mere 354 results for “Nokia lust”. If the iPhone was voted “Most popular kid in high school”, one can only assume Nokia would get “Nicest classmate”.

By Marie Boran