News 4/5/10

iPad vertical

iPad is on the street. And initial response? So far, pretty much what we expected – great consumer device, but lacking in a number of ways that could limit its business role. First-day sales estimates of the iPad are 700,000 units sold. Not bad for a day’s work. If you’re among the early buyers, send me an email and tell me what you think.

BlackBerry_Logo_Preferred_Colour_R

Research In Motion (RIM) posts strong quarterly earnings, but share price falls amid concern. Despite a 13 percent increase in net income compared to last year, the average price of a BlackBerry handset sold to a carrier was $311 last quarter versus the $320 estimate. The company estimates the average price per handset will further drop to between $305 and $310 this quarter. While RIM’s market share remains strong, it continues to decline. Speculation of a CDMA-enabled iPhone for Verizon casts further doubt on RIM’s outlook. The company’s share price fell by more than 7 percent following its earnings call – the company’s biggest decline in six months.

Palm Logo

Palm is suffering from its own woes… According to an InformationWeek article by Antone Gonsalves, Verizon is dropping the prices of the Palm Pre Plus to $50 from $150 and the Pixi Plus to $30 from $50. The carrier is also throwing in a second device along with the Mobile Hotspot application for the Palm devices at no charge. Verizon Wireless launched the promotion less than two weeks after Palm reported that the sales of its smartphones plummeted 29% during its last fiscal quarter to 408,000 units… It will be interesting to see what AT&T does with the Palm Web OS devices.

Here’s an interesting article in Bloomberg’s Business Week by Kerry Capell that takes a look at the expanding m-health market and how cell carriers are looking to participate. The article cites a few examples of companies that are taking machine-to-machine (M2M) applications to market. Cell carriers obviously have a huge interest in seeing m-health develop as it creates a very large, new revenue stream in the face of their core business being commoditized. While all the major carriers have created healthcare divisions or groups, their go-to-market strategy is likely to center on teaming arrangements with medical equipment and device manufacturers. As much as carriers would like to see m-health evolve rapidly, their efforts to expedite things along might be a little like pushing on a string… or perhaps more aptly, pulling on flowers to make them grow faster. It’s going to happen, it’s just going to take time.

Finally, I was just discussing with someone how mobility is a key consideration in unified communications, and lo and behold I came across an article by Carl Weinschenk of IT Business Edge called “The Shared Future of Unified Communications and Mobility.” While the article does not specifically mention my premise – that mobile solutions, especially the smartphone, are supplanting traditional forms of communications – the take-away is the same: anyone considering unified communications needs to think long and hard about where mobility fits in. I would actually go even further because I don’t think mobile devices are just creating new end-points that need to be supported. I think they are consolidating multiple end-points, and in the process, becoming the preferred end-point. In other words, mobility is not just a key concern of an organization’s UC strategy – it is the most important concern. I’m not sure any UC provider adequately deals with mobility, at least in the context of healthcare enterprises… Let me know if you think otherwise.

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    iPad figures quoted in this article were recent figure from one analyst which he inflated from 200K previous analyst guesses. None of these are Apples figures which just came out.
    http://www.apple.com/pr/library/2010/04/05ipad.html

  • Thanks for catching. I heard this morning on CNN that Apple’s official numbers were just over 300,000 units sold. That’s a far cry from the 700,000 number. I see that iPad owners already surpassed a million app downloads, and 250,000 eBooks. It will be interesting to see how things develop over the next few weeks and months.

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