I watch the market very closely for all mobile phones and obviously mostly Smartphones. And besides reading all the news sites, reports, and blogs a great tool is to watch the real market around you. And what really is one of the best judges for me is whether or not my friends and family have interest in the devices I write software for.
Obviously there is a transition going where consumers are going from Feature Phones to Smarter Phones and wanting to do more with them. Just as in the late 1990s to early 2000s we saw the main stream consumers all come over to the cell phone darkside. I remember the holdouts like my dad and father-in-law who would never need to have a phone along everywhere. The old system worked so well. Of course now my Father-in-law doesn’t go anywhere without his Razr on his hip and my mom and dad have a pay as you go that they take all over.
Now my dad would be considered a Techie guy in love with his computers and his digital photography, so I was able to get him interested in PDAs, which lets face it, the overwhelming majority of consumers were never going to fully adopt like they would the phone. But even then he started slowly and bought one more to use as a picture display more than anything else. And he had to get a Palm right when they were going down hill instead of splurging for a Pocket PC. He got that used later for a cheap deal, but the X5 though groundbreaking, wasnt really a great carry-around size…
Another good friend of mine was as they say “an early adopter” and did have an Axim that he used religiously for scheduling and to improve his Poker Game(with All-In) and so he has, like you would expect, moved on to a Windows Mobile Phone(Q) and Im sure will continue to move up the chain… Another friend uses them for work a lot in the Utility industry, but other than that most of my friends are still in the catch up ‘coming soon’ group with a couple having blackberry’s.
My Brother who is also a Developer(who even does a lot of Mobile Development) has just purchased a Mogul for his main phone. I thought he was going to hold out longer as well though he is the target guy for this phone. He always had work devices around but never would make the leap until recently, though him and his wife are the people I have seen utilize WM devices as Entertainment devices the most out of anyone I know, usually on car trips.
But the True Guage that the Majority Market is outgrowing their Razr’s and is moving this way is that my wife just not only said how she was interested in an eeeePc type device out of the blue, but also that she played with my development Treo 700wx all last night and said how much she liked it and wanted one for texting, organizing and because Bubble Breaker is so addictive!!! Wait until she tries some Astraware or PDAMill games… 🙂 I may have to get 2 Treo 800s in a few months…
Here comes the Consumer majority market. Fun!!