The iPhone effect: Palm & T-Mobile worst hit

Unlike the iPhone, with its touch screen-based interface, both the Treo and Sidekick offer a physical keypad
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Palm and T-Mobile (opens in new tab) have been hit hardest by the release of the Apple iPhone. That's according to a new study from NPD into how Apple's entry into the market is affecting mobile phone sales in the US.

Early iPhone buyers were 10 times more likely than other mobile phone buyers to have previously owned a Palm Treo, the report by NPD Group found. They were also three times more likely to have owned a T-Mobile branded phone, such as the Sidekick smartphone.

iPhone bridging the gap

According to NPD, Palm and T-Mobile customers have defected to Apple's device because the iPhone bridges the gap between content-focused feature phones and productivity-focused smartphones.

"The iPhone's internet and media capabilities have resonated with consumers - especially those who previously owned Treos and Sidekicks," said Ross Rubin, director of industry analysis at NPD. "Its advanced operating system makes it competitive with smartphones for many tasks, while its sleek design and lack of expandability is reminiscent of fashion phones."

However, Blackberry sales have so far been left unscathed, with Apple (opens in new tab) iPhone buyers no more likely than the average buyer to have previously owned a Blackberry.

"The iPhone's lack of corporate email support appears to make it less appetising to current Blackberry owners," Rubin said.

NPD surveyed more than 13,000 mobile phone buyers for the report.

Julia Sagar
Content director, special projects

Julia specialises in ecommerce at Future. For the last four years, she’s split her time between leading TechRadar’s crack team of deal editors - covering all the biggest sales of the year including Black Friday, Cyber Monday and Amazon Prime Day - and helping the audiences of Future’s consumer tech and lifestyle brands (TechRadar, Tom's Guide, T3, Marie Claire, Woman & Home and more) find the best products and services for their needs and budget.


A former editor of global design website Creative Bloq, she has over 15 years’ experience in online and print journalism, and was part of the team that launched TechRadar way back in the day. When she isn't reviewing mattresses (she’s tested more than she cares to remember), or sharing tips on how to save money in the latest sales, she can usually be found writing about anything from green energy to graphic design.