updated 02:05 pm EDT, Fri June 15, 2007
UK iPhone Demand Strong
British demand for the iPhone is very high despite its limitations, new research published by M:Metrics shows. The company's study points to about 56 percent of the over 5,200 respondents being aware of the device; approximately 28 percent of those have "strong" interest in buying the handset as is, the analysts say. An extrapolation by the firm estimates that the figure would amount to almost 7 million of all cellphone users in the country, or almost 16 percent of the entire field.
The figure is surprising but also crucial to Apple, according to senior researcher Paul Goode. While Apple has taken about 70 percent of the US music player market, the California company's share of Europe is far less certain and will make for a greater struggle to get the phone recognized as an option, he says. Also, slightly less than 10 percent of British users rely on their phones for music, and roughly a third of all phones available in local stores have at least some music playback functionality -- showing that the tide may be against music-only players like the iPod.
"Introducing the iPhone was a necessary defensive move for Apple," says Goode. "If they hadn't done so, they would have lost market share."
The European phone industry is generally recognized as higher-end compared to the US, with many phones often focusing heavily on 3G Internet access (absent on the iPhone) as well as more advanced media capturing and playback. [via Inquirer]