Survey says demand high for iPhone 5, 4S not so much

Sep 30, 2011
Tech

We’ve heard that analysts expect the iPhone 4 to continue to sell well right up to the launch of the iPhone 5, but a new survey suggests that a pretty large number of existing mobile users will go for the new device, too. The survey comes from independent mobile ad network InMobi, which reports that […]

We’ve heard that analysts expect the iPhone 4 to continue to sell well right up to the launch of the iPhone 5, but a new survey suggests that a pretty large number of existing mobile users will go for the new device, too.

The survey comes from independent mobile ad network InMobi, which reports that 41 percent of current mobile users in the U.S., Canada and Mexico intend to switch to the iPhone 5, according to a story from PCWorld.

That’s a lot of users, and also a lot of users that want to either upgrade their iPhones or jump ship from another device. According to PCWorld’s story, the study reported that more than half of BlackBerry users questioned intend to switch to the iPhone 5, while 27 percent of Android users intend to switch. Meanwhile, just better than half of current iPhone owners – 51 percent – are upgrading to the iPhone 5, the survey finds. As PC World states, these figures suggest this could be Apple’s best iPhone launch ever, provided the survey turns out to be true.

Apple seems to think things will go well, anyway. The iPhone maker has reportedly ordered a huge number of the next version of its device: 26 million units, in fact, as DigiTimes reported earlier this month. Add to that another 30 million of the older models of the iPhone, that same report claimed.

There’s just one catch for Apple with InMobi’s survey, and that’s the fact that all this iPhone 5 interest is interest in a new iPhone 5. Rumors have been flying about two possible new iPhone models, and Apple could release both or either one. The first is the iPhone 5, which is reportedly a fully redesigned phone with a new look and better internal hardware than its predecessors. The second, not so much; dubbed the iPhone 4S, it would have some slightly better internal components, but it would basically be a slightly improved iPhone 4.

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InMobi’s survey finds that interest is a lot lower if it turns out that Apple announces a more incremental iPhone update on Oct. 4. “An iPhone 4S–a slightly improved iPhone 4 on the inside–would not fare as well with consumers, according to the InMobi study,” PCWorld writes. “In that case, less than 15 percent of consumers would be willing to drop their Androids (11 percent) and BlackBerrys (28 percent) for a new iPhone.”

But that’s okay, because given the importance of this iPhone announcement given that it’s the first for freshly minted Apple CEO Tim Cook, it seems really unlikely that Apple would release only the weaker iPhone 4S. Some rumors have claimed both phones might be in the cards; seems there’s no survey results for an “iPhone overload” contingency.

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Phil Hornshaw

Phil Hornshaw is a freelance writer, editor and author living in Los Angeles, dividing his time between playing video games, playing video games on his cell phone, and writing about playing video games. He’s also the co-author of So You Created a Wormhole: The Time Traveler’s Guide to Time Travel, which attempts to mix time travel pop culture with some semblance of science, as well as tips on the appropriate means of riding dinosaurs. Check out his profile.

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