As the CEO of a mobile tech company that has been around since 2005 with green screens, WAP and 2G data connectivity, the iPhone certainly shifted the market like nothing else in the industry. Think about what it delivered – a touch screen that worked, text conversation threads, and the most significant the revitalization of the application market. I don’t think there is anyone that would argue against the fact that the iPhone is an incredible media device, but it’s Achilles-heel in the US has been that it is a terrible phone. Having a 15 minute call on it is an exercise in serious I-want-to-hurl-you-at-the-ground-smashing-you-into-a-thousand-dropped-call-pieces of restraint.
Our IT guy (god bless him for having to put up with me and all my devices) reminded me the other day how I’ve only had 2 AT&T phones over the past 5 years and every time I’ve done nothing but complain about the network. I’m currently on a Blackberry Torch running on AT&T (so this was clearly a recent conversation) and I was about to switch back to a Verizon device but I wanted to wait until the iPhone came out on Verizon before I switch, because I finally think it’s time to fully commit to iLife. While I didn’t think I could handle AT&T until June, (the initial rumored release date) now that we’re on for February 10th, I’m in!!
The two main questions the market is asking now is:
- What do I think I’m getting by this move to a Verizon iPhone?
- Who do I think will be most hurt by Verizon having the iPhone?
Taking these questions in order, I think I’m getting a phone, yes that’s right not a media device a phone that I can talk on. I know it’s a wild concept but I would actually like to talk on the phone and yes I mean hell yes I want all the apps and functionality of this killer media device.
Question 2 I believe may actually be presenting a point missed by every analyst report I’ve read on the subject, but it’s not AT&T that is going to feel the pain as much as Blackberry, I mean RIM is in trouble now. The best Blackberry I’ve used to date is the torch, it’s a fantastic device coming from Blackberry but it doesn’t hold a match to Android or iPhone.
This also very much pains me to say, as I have been a dedicated user of Blackberries more then any other device over the past 5 years. AT&T will do fine, as they have locked their customers into new 2 year contracts knowing this day would come and because overall they have the best portfolio of devices of any US carrier.
The real pain point I believe for Blackberry, is that they have had 5 years of exclusivity, which only limited the dominance of the iPhone device and they didn’t come out with a single iPhone killer. I’m sorry Blackberry, but you need some innovation beyond email and a qwerty keyboard, that’s table-steaks these days. Additionally, the 14k apps that are impossible to download and find not to mention make work are not helping their position.
Anyway – yes, I’m pre-ordering on the 3rd and yes I’ll be in line on the 10th – and you’ll know it’s me because I’ll not only be using the iPhone to text, email, and download apps but I’ll be the one talking on it for WAY longer then 15 minutes without dropping the call.
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