Game Marketing Tips, Analysis, and News

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Cheap Androids Are Here

If you were waiting for smartphones to get cheap enough before they started to really take over the market, the wait is over. You can now get the LG Optimus V, a decent enough Android smartphone will all of the basic features  (3G, WiFi, touchscreen, Android apps, web browsing) for $149. That's the total price; no long-term contract. You can get monthly plans with unlimited broadband from Virgin Mobile for $25 per month with a limited amount of minutes.

This means we'll probably see no-contract smartphones for $99 this year. At that price, expect to see a huge wave of adoptions. Only the Luddites will hang onto their dumbphones. And all of those users will be looking for apps... especially games. And music, and e-books, and video... digital content in hordes.

Which begs the question: How do RIM and Nokia maintain any kind of market share in such an environment? At what point do they change course to stem the rapidly retreating market share? When does reality overcome stubbornness?

Perhaps Nokia will use its new CEO, freshly hired away from Microsoft, to cut a deal to adopt Windows Phone 7. Or maybe RIM will adopt Android before the Blackberry becomes a symbol of an executive mired in the past. (I still don't see what the downside is to RIM taking on Android... it's not like they have to pay a license fee. Their differentiator would still be their bulletproof email system. But RIM has to decide what business they are in... phone OS sales? hardware? Or service contracts... I bet I know where the most profit comes from.)

I wonder how long it will be before we see the iPhone on other carriers besides Verizon...

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