updated 01:34 pm EDT, Tue June 26, 2012
Carrier heavily marketing 4G devices instead
The iPhone is no longer Verizon's bestselling smartphone, according to a note from William Blair analyst Anil Doradla. The claim is based on channel checks for the June quarter, and marks the first time the iPhone has slipped out of the lead since the carrier started carrying the product in February last year. Although sales could potentially be suffering in the wait for a next-generation iPhone, Doradla suggests that the root cause is Verizon putting the brunt of its marketing into 4G-capable smartphones, namely the Motorola Droid RAZR MAXX.
The iPhone is, however, still the bestselling smartphone in the US as a whole. "Bottom line," says Doralda, "while we acknowledge the increased competitive landscape from 4G devices (and the iPhone 4S is not 4G), we are not worried [about] Apple conceding its top position in North America any time soon. We believe the anticipated launch of a 4G device from Apple this fall will be an important catalyst for the company as consumers upgrade their phones, and we expect the company to once again maintain its top position at all operators (including Verizon Wireless)."
In third place behind the iPhone during the June quarter was Samsung's Galaxy Nexus, which like the Droid RAZR MAXX is an Android phone. Prior to getting the iPhone Verizon was considered the main bastion of Android devices, making it an important market for Apple to crack. The carrier touts its 4G network as one of its main selling points, which may continue to hurt Apple until an expected LTE iPhone ships this fall.