Back in September, I went shopping for a new smartphone. I didn't buy one because my contract was not ready to expire and the prospect of paying full price for a phone or paying for a second service ultimately convinced me to wait on the purchase. But during the shopping process, I told my teenage son to review the phones offered by Verizon and Sprint because he wants, and arguably needs, a smartphone with full email capability. I was shocked when he immediately said he wasn't interested. I was more surprised as to why. He had already decided that his next phone would be a Google or Android-based phone.
Just to test my son's commitment to the Android platform, I asked about the Apple iPhone. I offered that he could possibly get an iPhone were we to wait for our AT&T contract to expire next March. He wasn't interested. In his mind Google can do no wrong and Android will become the dominant smartphone platform.
Now I don't know if he is right or not. But I was shocked that he was so sure and trusting of Google. He is a tech-centric kid who plans to be an engineer. And many of his friends are tech savvy as well. In talking with a number of his friends over the past month or so, I found them to share his respect and trust of Google -- and apathy for the iPhone.
Now clearly a lot of consumers are smitten with the iPhone. A story on the EE Times web site today reports that the iPhone is the top selling handset among adult consumers in the US. That's an impressive feat -- especially given only one carrier in the US offers the iPhone. But note that the story does say adult consumers.
It seems that the iPhone is more popular with the 20- to 40-something crowd who are occasional text messengers. The teen crowd that will send a couple of dozen text messages -- when a quick phone call would be far more efficient -- likes a real keyboard in my opinion. And the tech-savvy part of that crowd likes Google. After the G1 shipped, I pointed out the shortcomings to my son. For me, the lack of Outlook synchronization support would be a show stopper. My son assured me the open-source community would quickly rectify the shortcomings.
I'm certainly interested to see how Android plays in the market. Motorola, Samsung, and LG should have Android phones early next year Even PC and motherboard maker Asus is planning an Android phone.
For those that have read this far, here are a few more links that you might peruse. The most comprehensive G1 review that I've seen comes courtesy of Gizmodo. You can also read a view a video from Rick Merritt of EE Times. Finally, check out an inside look at the G1 in this teardown.