Although overall sales of cell phones fell by 15% from last year, sales of the iPhone substantially increased during the third quarter of 2008 to make the device the best selling phone in the United States. The iPhone supplanted Motorola‚Äôs RAZR‚Äîwhich fell to #2‚Äîin the top spot. Rounding out the top five were, in order, the Blackberry Curve, LG‚Äôs Rumor, and the LG enV2.
In the study of mobile phone sales conducted by the NPD Group, the leading wireless research firm, it was noted that two features most motivated consumers to purchase a specific handset: 43% of all buyers stated that they need a camera in their cell phone, and 36% said that the ability to send and receive text messages was necessary for them to consider a specific handset.
NPD‚Äôs study also determined that phones with a QWERTY-style keyboard had the biggest increase in sales over the same period in 2007, followed closely by phones that were Bluetooth enabled, and phones that were music enabled.
NPD noted that a ‚Äúdigital divide‚Äù has developed in the wireless handset world, with a certain set of consumers using their cell phones only to make and receive voice calls‚Äîand not caring about additional digital features‚Äîwhile other consumers use their phones for various digital and media applications.
The implications, NPD stated, obviously have a profound implication for wireless companies seeking to upgrade their consumers to more advance technologies.