There were 81 million Smartphones sold world-wide in the third quarter of 2010 alone. According to an article in the Wall Street Journal, “Smartphones accounted for nearly one in five mobile phones sold that quarter. The chiefs of Verizon Communications Inc. and AT&T Inc. think Smartphones could account for nearly three of every four phones sold by the middle of the decade. Between the emergence of the iPad, apps, Android Smartphones and the introduction of 4G networks, 2010 was the year the computer truly went mobile.” Welcome to 2011 and the mobile world.
2011—It’s a Mobile World
Tablets came into their strength in 2010. Thanks mainly to the Apple iPad, tablet sales are now surging in the marketplace. Analysts at Citigroup estimate Apple will sell about 14 million iPads this year, and some analysts say it could have shipped even more if Apple’s supply had kept up. Apple created a whole new mobile market with its iPad touchscreen tablet computer, which went on sale in early April. Microsoft had previously tried to push a tablet computer but had little success. Now everyone wants to compete with the iPad’s success. Samsung‘s Galaxy Tab is the only real competitor at this time. 2011 will bring alternatives from Motorola and RIM BlackBerry, among others. The new Android OS will be appearing on tablets as well as the Smartphones. This will be an attempt to take on the success of Apple’s iPad, but how successful this bid will remain to be seen.
The Android Smartphone was introduced in 2009. It really hit its stride in 2010. This is mainly due to Google’s partnership with Verizon Wireless and two phone makers, Motorola and HTC. These two manufacturers produced a series of Smartphones this year, which proved to be a huge success, even passing Apple in market share. The predictions have the Android market going to a cheaper Smartphone market (under $100 unsubsidized). With data plans becoming cheaper, the Droid market will go crazy.
2010 was the year of the app. When Apple opened its iPhone app development to outside developers, apps became a major economic force of their own. Google, RIM and Verizon are jumping on the band wagon. Now not only are apps for entertainment, but many corporations are developing apps as well. Business users track sales, monitor systems or check-out customers without being tied to their stations. With more tablets being sold, business apps will continue to explode the market.
Wi-Fi hotspots are common place. With all the Smartphone, tablets and laptops in use, free Wi-Fi hotspots seem to be everywhere. You can log in while having coffee at most every Starbucks, and even many MacDonalds offer free Wi-Fi. AT&T beefed up their hotzones for New Year’s Eve in NY’s Times Square in anticipation of the 1 million people expected that night, many of whom would be sending text messages and tweets at midnight.
Are you a mobile user? Do you have a Smartphone that checks your email regularly for you? Do you browse the web when you want information or directions? I confess that I am very much addicted to having all this technology at my fingertips. Compared to life even 5 years ago, my mobile capabilities make my life easier to manage. What about you?