Linked by Thom Holwerda on Wed 16th Oct 2013 09:48 UTC
PDAs, Cellphones, Wireless

I think many who extol Android's flexibility fall into the tinkerer category, including some tech bloggers. They love all the ways they can customize their phones, not because they're seeking some perfect setup, but because they can swap in a new launcher every week. That's fun for them; but they've made the mistake of not understanding how their motivation differs from the rest of us.

A whopping 70%-80% of the world's smartphone owners have opted for Android over iOS. You could easily argue that 3-4 years ago, when Android was brand new, that it was for early adopters and tinkerers. To still trot out this ridiculous characterisation now that Android is on the vast majority of smartphones sold is borderline insanity.

Choice is not Android's problem. People who assume out of a misplaced arrogance that they represent the average consumer are the problem.

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RE[3]: It's cheap
by Thom_Holwerda on Wed 16th Oct 2013 11:20 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: It's cheap"
Thom_Holwerda
Member since:
2005-06-29

Here in the states these cheapo phones are everywhere. Android 2.3 phones that are basically thrown at people, I wouldn't be surprised if they're included in cereal boxes.


I just realised something - with 20% of the US living in - by Dutch standards - extreme poverty, the prevalence of these cheap phones in the US actually makes sense.

Reply Parent Score: 10

RE[4]: It's cheap
by darknexus on Wed 16th Oct 2013 11:30 in reply to "RE[3]: It's cheap"
darknexus Member since:
2008-07-15

I just realised something - with 20% of the US living in - by Dutch standards - extreme poverty, the prevalence of these cheap phones in the US actually makes sense.

Except that it doesn't. Have you seen what a smart phone plan costs over here, and how little you actually get for what you pay? The phone is, by far, the lesser of the expenses and yet people are eager to buy cheapo crap phones and yet pay for the most expensive voice and data plan they can get. You do realize that those plans, even for a single individual, can easily top US $100 per month before taxes don't you? This price can be cut considerably going with an MVNO (which is what I did), but that requires a lot more research and effort on the customers' part if you want a smart phone rather than a dumb phone.

Reply Parent Score: 3

RE[5]: It's cheap
by Drumhellar on Wed 16th Oct 2013 16:50 in reply to "RE[4]: It's cheap"
Drumhellar Member since:
2005-07-12

It's not difficult at all to find a good plan that costs significantly less than $100 for service. I pay $63 (with taxes), and have far more data than I normally use, including tethering. MetroPCS is even cheaper. AT&T, Verizon, and Sprint all have their own cheaper pay-as-you-go brands.

Thom is quite right. The US sells a lot of $99 unsubsidized Android phones because we have a lot of poor people.

The number of people living below the poverty line in the US is nearly triple the total population of the Netherlands. The market for super-cheap Android phones is quite large over here.

Reply Parent Score: 4

RE[5]: It's cheap
by Morgan on Wed 16th Oct 2013 21:43 in reply to "RE[4]: It's cheap"
Morgan Member since:
2005-06-29

This pretty much exactly describes where we are at. We aren't quite poverty level if you combine our incomes, but we're certainly not "well off". I left Sprint for Straight Talk and was given an HTC One S by my best friend when he upgraded a few months ago. I pay $45/month for unlimited everything and I have a huge selection of phones at my disposal if something happens to this one.

My wife is still on Sprint, with a Kyocera Rise that was free but we pay $100/month for her line (again, unlimited everything). When her contract is up we will probably move her to the same phone on Virgin Mobile, as she is more than happy with the phone as it is.

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE[4]: It's cheap
by Nelson on Wed 16th Oct 2013 11:32 in reply to "RE[3]: It's cheap"
Nelson Member since:
2005-11-29

Major factor for sure, I guess a reasonable conclusion is that Android means different things for different people at different price points.

For some the openness is a lure, for others its the spec ware, for others its that they genuinely like the ecosystem, etc. If it commands such a large market presence then surely its popular for a variety of reasons.

Cheap is certainly one, and even if its not the most popular reason, it is certainly a sizeable one I'd bet

Edited 2013-10-16 11:35 UTC

Reply Parent Score: 4