Apple, HTC trim phone forecasts as markets tank
Fewer parts ordered as economocalypse looms
Apple and HTC may be locked in mortal patent combat, but they do agree on one thing: the world economy appears poised to slide into the crapper. Again.
The two dueling smartphone makers are among the handset vendors cutting back on chipset orders from Asian suppliers, according to sources speaking to the Taiwanese market watchers at DigiTimes.
Smartphone vendors, including Apple and HTC – the top Android-based smartphone vendor, with 35.9 per cent of that market, according to Nielsen – will hit their targets in the third quarter of this year, according to DigiTimes's sources, but the fourth quarter isn't looking quite as rosy.
At the end of 2010, HTC had projected that it would sell 50 million handsets in 2011. In the first quarter of this year, feeling bullish, it upped its projection to 70 million units. Now it has revised that projection downward to 50 to 60 million units.
Apple, sources say, is also cutting back. The Cupertinian reasoning, it appears, is simple: even the iPhone 5 – which today's rumeur du jour says will appear in early October – won't fly off the shelves in the event of Meltdown II, no matter how droolworthy it might be. ®
I wouldn't just blame the economy...
All those who bought last year's uber-phone, and are still locked into a contract, aren't really going to be scratching at the doors this year for a new phone (crazed fanbois of all flavours excluded of course).
Why? Well if you have last year's iPhone4 or HTC DesireHD etc, what can't you do that this year's phone could? Ummmm... Yes, now you see the problem. Common sense has killed the sales (hence I excluded the fanbois).
There just isn't a killer feature for the new phones. So what if it can scan RFID tags, you've got to find one to scan first of all! So that's not going to do it. The webbrowser from last year still works fine, it loads up in a second, so maybe I could save 0.5seconds by spending £400 this year, then again, maybe I'll just blink instead.
I'm still happy with my Desire Z, which just sneaks into the "last year's phone" bracket. I feel no need to buy a sensation, although I have played with one, it's a nice phone, and all very pretty, but there is no "must have" extra.
In fact, barring a sudden, unexpected invention of something even Apple hasn't thought to patent, I can't see why I would need anything more than what I currently have in my pocket.
There is one big exception, it's the huge elephant in the room. The one killer feature which would make me buy a new phone... 3 days of real use from one charge... That would do it! A feat which my old Nokia N95 could do, even my N97 could do it, although that wasn't really real use, as it spent half the time crashing and rebooting!
@Steve Evans Re Upgrade Cycles
Like you (as we have discussed before) I am still happy with my "Z" and yes, unless one is a totally maniacal fanboy I do not see the point with constant upgrading. One ends up never having a genuine "wow" feeling because the difference (in reality) between each successive piece of kit is minor. I seem to recall that at one point (before smart phones took off) that people were upgrading their dumbphone shinys every nine months! The manufacturers must of course have thought that they were in pig heaven. Problem here is that when you have bought something high end with the capabilities of a modern smartphone (and the price) an upgrade cycle shorter than eighteen months/two years just does not make sense - financially or in terms of the improvement in the kit that you are getting for the money. The current length of contracts appears to be about right in regard to upgrades for everybody but the most obsessive fanboy (although I do not myself buy on contract). The manufacturers want you to spend 500 quid on one of their high end offerings and then expect you to treat it as if it were disposable! They would be better off taking notice of your final point - battery life. Given that the modern smartphone market has existed for about a decade it is a flaming disgrace that battery life has scarcely improved at all. BTW, it will be interesting to see what Nokia in fact manage with their first "Nokiasoft" phone, after all battery life has always been one of their major strengths.
"Every pound taken in benefits is a pound taken out of the country / taxpayers - every pound earned is money in."
I assume that you are of course directing these admonitions at employers who pay such shit that one still needs benefits, the landlords who feed off the benefits system and of course (lest we forget) the (w)bankers, all of whom are parasites on the public purse on a scale that the average poor sod on the social can only dream about.
No, you're not missing anything.
I have a Desire HD which I purchased from that ever-reputable source, ebay. Thanks to xda-dev, I unlocked it and loaded it with a recent custom ROM, and I'm quite happy with it.
It's snappy and responsive, it only cost me £240 (obviously since it's an ebay special, no contract tied to it) and does everything I could want. My previous HTC Magic didn't. The screen was too small, and web browsing was laggy, as was attempting to run many applications.
A work colleague of mine recently acquired an HTC Sensation:- nice device, but it has the same screen size, and effectively can do everything just as well as my Desire HD. Of course, you'd pick up the Sensation now over the HD, but if you have a slightly older device (but with still very servicable specs such as the Desire HD), there really is no reason you'd want a new one.
Greetings fellow Z'er.
I wouldn't hold out much hope for the Nokiasoft. The Nokias of old managed their impressive battery life by having very low power CPUs (we're talking number crunching power, not just battery sucking power here). They could do this because they were running a very efficient OS, Symbian.
Symbian was built from the ground up in the days when mobile devices just didn't have huge powerful CPUs. Android, WinMo and IOS aren't. They're all stripped down version of big OS's.
In the world of mobile devices there are always compromises. With Symbian the compromises were almost exclusively made in favour of low power consumption, because the power just wasn't there at the time to be used! The newer OS's had the CPU power, and have used it (programmers always use everything available to them, plus a bit more). Occasionally they have actually given us something useful too.. Which we got used to, and liked.
I doubt we're going to see 3 days phones for a while, not until the "dual core" willy waving is finished and everyone calms down to let the battery technology catch up!
You can actually get quite a few days out of a DZ, I discovered this (thanks to the excessive EU data roaming charges) when I went abroad... Data off, wifi off, bluetooth off, and remember to switch into flight mode if you go into an area of no coverage (stops the radio cranking up to full power and screaming the cell equivalent of "HELLO?" all the time!). It also helps that you tend to keep phone calls short due to the roaming charges too. Best I saw was from fully charged at 6am to 92% at 9pm!
So if you just use your smartphone as a phone, everything is good... Now I just want to use the "smart" part please!