For those who think Apple iPhone sales will fall in the U.S. after its exclusive agreement with AT&T ends, think again: sales of the device in Europe are actually rising thanks to wider distribution.
That's great news for Apple, and awful news for AT&T, because it shows that there are many more customers out there that won't switch to AT&T for the iPhone, either by choice or necessity.
Sales of the device in France (where it's available on three carriers) have boosted Apple's value market share to 32 percent in the latest quarter, from 21 percent only three months earlier, according to research from firm Bernstein.
Here's the kicker quote from a MarketWatch article, with emphasis from me:
"Apple's increase is coming at the expense of RIM, with over 600,000 iPhone handsets being sold during Q3 2009 in France alone."
That makes France the biggest market for the iPhone in Europe. Scary fact from that article: 40 percent of all mobile TV sessions in France are done on an iPhone.
Analysts are saying the same thing could happen in the United Kingdom, which has five major carriers.
Can it happen in North America?