The Droid X went on sale today, and as early adopters flock to the stores, one can’t help but notice the clash between smartphone titans At&T and Verizon.
Not a month ago, on June 24th, Apple released the iPhone 4, a product carried exclusively by AT&T, and the buzz was similar—until Apple’s antenna problems surfaced, of course.
And teamed up with Apple, AT&T has reigned supreme over the smartphone realm. For long they have dominated the market with 45 percent share or greater, according to comScore. However, the tectonic plates of telecom appear to be shifting.
Verizon, the most expansive cell phone carrier in the world, has developed nascent ties with Google—ties that are growing deeper with the launch of every new Android device—and although many have anticipated the day when the iPhone become’s unshackled by AT&T to be used under the auspices of Verizon’s superior network, new evidence suggests that Verizon is gaining market share without the help of Jobs and his recently begrudged iPhones.
According to comScore, Verizon has managed to cut more broadly out of the smartphone market-pie, increasing its share to 26 percent in May, up from 20 percent in 2008. With the advent of the Droid X and the bad PR that’s beleaguering Apple of late, that market share will likely increase.
This news couldn’t come at a better time for Verizon, which has been left eating the dust after they turned down Apple’s iPhone offer in 2007. Things were looking bad for Verizon, but they began collaborating with Google and Motorola during 2008, and, now, with the release of the Droid X, the team will have created six phones running Android OS.
According to an article in the New York Times, the Google operating system now commands 13 percent of the smartphone market in the United States, while Apple has 24 percent share, and RIM, maker of BlackBerry, commands 42 percent. The 13 percent market share of Google is not only from Verizon; T-Mobile and Sprint use Android too.
It will be interesting to see the market disruption in the coming days, especially after Apple holds its press conference tomorrow. The conference is predicted to be Apple’s latest attempt to parry the bad PR they’ve received from bad antenna signals worsened by bad explanations and burdened by mounting lawsuits.