Cheap smartphones will help Android overtake the iPhone

Sony Ericsson's Xperia X8 will cost less than US$250 before subsidies

Vendors are adding cheaper and simpler Android-based phones to their portfolios, in an effort to put smartphones in the hands of more users. The products will also help close the gap between Android and Apple's iPhone, according to analysts.

On Tuesday, Samsung Electronics launched the Galaxy 3 and Galaxy 5. On Wednesday, Sony Ericsson announced the Xperia X8, which will start shipping in the third quarter and cost less than €200 (US$250) before subsidies, according to a blog post. The Xperia X8 comes with a 3-inch display, a 3.2-megapixel camera and navigation using A-GPS (Assisted-GPS).

The new price point will help attract a new audience for Android-based smartphones, Sony Ericsson said.

Sales of Android smartphones have exceeded those of the iPhone in North America, but globally the iPhone was still ahead of Android by more than 3 million units during the first quarter, according to market research company Gartner.

However, the arrival of smartphones like the Galaxy 3, Galaxy 5 and the Xperia X8 will help drive sales volume and give Google an edge in the smartphone OS war with Apple.

"Android is undoubtedly growing in strength, and I think if you look at the momentum that Android has now ... it looks set to next year really start pushing Apple in terms of volumes, and in a two year time frame become the second largest platform behind Symbian," said Geoff Blaber, analyst at CCS Insight.

The only thing that can stop Android from becoming the second largest smartphone platform is Google, if starts to dictate conditions that the phone vendors cannot live with, said Carolina Milanesi, research vice president at Gartner. But for Google, this has always been the end game, mass market popularity, she said.

For operators, low-cost Android smartphones will help them increase use of data services among their subscribers, according to Milanesi.

Some European operators are already working with Chinese vendors, including Huawei and ZTE, on their own low-cost smartphones based on Google's OS.

However, the arrival of cheap smartphones running Android isn't good news for everyone. For Nokia, it means even more unwanted challengers. The vendor has struggled in the high-end smartphone market, but has been more successful in the low end, where it will now face more competition from Android, according to Blaber.

Join the newsletter!

Or
Error: Please check your email address.
Rocket to Success - Your 10 Tips for Smarter ERP System Selection

Tags smartphonesAndroidiPhone

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Mikael Ricknäs

IDG News Service
Show Comments

Essentials

James Cook University - Master of Data Science Online Course

Learn more >

Mobile

Sansai 6-Outlet Power Board + 4-Port USB Charging Station

Learn more >

Exec

Budget

Back To Business Guide

Click for more ›

Brand Post

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Andrew Teoh

Brother MFC-L9570CDW Multifunction Printer

Touch screen visibility and operation was great and easy to navigate. Each menu and sub-menu was in an understandable order and category

Louise Coady

Brother MFC-L9570CDW Multifunction Printer

The printer was convenient, produced clear and vibrant images and was very easy to use

Edwina Hargreaves

WD My Cloud Home

I would recommend this device for families and small businesses who want one safe place to store all their important digital content and a way to easily share it with friends, family, business partners, or customers.

Walid Mikhael

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

It’s easy to set up, it’s compact and quiet when printing and to top if off, the print quality is excellent. This is hands down the best printer I’ve used for printing labels.

Ben Ramsden

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

Brainstorming, innovation, problem solving, and negotiation have all become much more productive and valuable if people can easily collaborate in real time with minimal friction.

Sarah Ieroianni

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

The print quality also does not disappoint, it’s clear, bold, doesn’t smudge and the text is perfectly sized.

Featured Content

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?