British mobile phone provider O2 has found a much higher consumer interest in the new iPhone than when the original was released last year. Four times as high, in fact.
More than 130,000 people have expressed their interest in the 3G iPhone by logging into O2′s website and pre-registering, according to the Telegraph. This is a huge increase in interest, compared to 35,000 pre-registrations for the first iPhone between September and November.
What’s amazing is 35,000 registrations were made during a period of nearly 7 weeks. 130,000 people have signed up in just one week, with 3 weeks remaining before the iPhone’s launch on July 11.
The huge increase in interest is likely caused by both the phone’s inclusion of 3G internet and Apple’s decision to allow subsidizing. O2 is selling the new iPhone for free on high-revenue contracts.
While 130,000 may not seem like a large number compared to the millions Apple expects to sell, it is representative of how well the second-gen Apple phone will perform worldwide compared to the first. Some things to consider:
- The first iPhone was not available in as many countries as the second one will be.
- Of the countries that did get the iPhone, not all of them offered it as early as the US.
- There wasn’t as much interest in the first phone because of lack of 3G and high prices.
- Despite the above facts, 4 million units were still sold by January 2008 with even more sold since that time.
If interest in the iPhone 2 is the same around the world as it is in the UK, not to mention more countries will be selling it, we can reasonably estimate that more than 4 times as many 3Gs will be sold as 2Gs. Apple’s goal was to sell 10 million iPhones in 2008; analysts are predicting sales of 14 million in 2008 and 24 million in 2009, according to the iPhone blog. Apple could easily surpass these predictions.
This is hard news for the competition to swallow. How will other phone makers ensure that their market share is not eaten up by Apple’s powerhouse phone?
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