Why the sudden explosion of smartphone users? Barriers to mass-market smartphone adoption are being eliminated left and right by mobile network operators, smartphone OEMs and mobile developers:
- Plummeting prices and generous operator subsidies make smartphones affordable to more consumers. Witness the Motorola Droid Eris, an Android smartphone available online and on-contract from Verizon Wireless for under $100.
- Flat-rate data plans provide consumers with predictable and budget-able monthly smartphone usage costs. T-Mobile USA's Even More Plus plans provide unlimited voice, data and messaging with no contract for $80 per month.
- Easy-to-learn user interfaces of modern smartphone operating systems make smartphones less daunting to newbie consumers. The Apple iPhone is an iconic example of a smartphone whose skyrocketing adoption is due to an extraordinarily consumer-friendly user interface. Palm webOS and Google Android are also well-suited for mass-market consumers.
- Touchscreens and Qwerty keyboards (and other must-have hardware features) are persuading users to upgrade to smartphones. A Gartner study of second quarter 2009 handset sales reported smartphone sales growth of 27 percent, while total handset sales fell 6 percent.
- Smartphones provide access to catalogs of useful, cool and fun mobile apps that are aren't available on feature phones.
Read more: http://www.fiercedeveloper.com/story/targeting-smartphone-apps-mass-market-users/2010-02-05#ixzz0fKnCG9cb