Apple iPhone Outsold By RIM's Blackberry Curve in US

Research in Motion’s Blackberry Curve has dethroned Apple’s iPhone as the best-selling smartphone in the United States during the first quarter of the year, according to the stats revealed by the marketing research company NPD Group.

The research firm’s monthly “Smartphone Market Update” report, which includes online survey of US consumers, notified that Blackberry Curve topped the charts of smartphone segment, previously being dominated by Apple’s iPhone.

Other smartphones that made it to the list of top five include RIM Blackberry Storm, RIM Blackberry Pearl (all models, except flip), and T-Mobile’s Android powered G1 handset.

The research firm accredited this substantial rise in Blackberry sales to an aggressive “buy one, get one free” promotion campaign conducted by the network carrier Verizon Wireless. The promotion helped RIM to snag around 50 percent share in the US smartphone domain, up from 15 percent registered in the fourth quarter of 2008.

In addition to this, Blackberry Curve’s low cost, coupled with its availability on four different carriers has further boosted the sales of the handset against Apple’s blockbuster iPhone, which is available only through AT&T, NPD added.

Furthermore, NPD reported that smartphones accounted for as much as 23 percent of the total handsets sold in the first quarter, as compared to 17 percent during the same period a year ago.

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Our Comments

It is not as straight forward as it seems as RIM appears to have been using some substantial discounting to secure sales. It would probably have been better to compare the total revenues generated by both handsets for their respective manufacturers and it is more than likely that the iPhone would have won hands down. Don't get me wrong, the Curve is a wonderful piece of technology but the iPhone is currently in another category.

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