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Palm, BlackBerry-beating demand for 3G iPhone claims researcher

US consumers eye Apple smartphone

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More than half of US consumers looking to buy a smartphone in the next three months will opt for Apple's 3G iPhone.

So says investment house RBC Capital Markets on the back of a survey of 3600 tame consumers on its Technology Adoption Panel conducted last month just after the second-gen iPhone was announced by Steve Jobs.

Some 56 per cent said they want a 3G iPhone. Three months previously, only 35 per cent of the the same group said the Apple handset appealed to them.

What prompted the change of heart? Better pricing and 3G connectivity, panel members said.

If RBC's numbers are replicated by the market as a whole, there will be "unprecedented pent-up demand" for the new Apple phone, company analyst Mike Abramsky told investors.

Good news for Apple, but not for its competitors. Some 23 per cent of the group said they'd opt for a BlackBerry, while only three per cent preferred a Palm. An HTC handset was the next most popular (two per cent), followed by Motorola (one per cent). Nine per cent of panel members chose from among all the remaining brands, Nokia among them. The remaining six per cent presumably aren't interested in buying a smartphone.

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