Pooh-poohing iPhone damage to Nokia

Nokia is headed toward 40 percent global market share and Apple can't make a dent in that, a mobile distributor contends.
Written by Reuters , Contributor
Nokia is headed toward 40 percent global-market share and Apple's iPhone won't make a dent in that, according to a U.S. distributor of mobiles and other wireless devices.

"Nokia's market share is on its way towards the 40 percent mark, and it has a superior standing in cheap, midrange as well as high-end wireless devices," Brightpoint Chief Executive Bob Laikin told Finnish financial daily Kauppalehti, in comments published Wednesday.

Nokia, the world's top cell phone maker, is Brightpoint's largest customer. Nokia reported a global market share of 36 percent in the first quarter.

Laikin also said he expects that Apple's iPhone, set to go on sale Friday in the United States, will have only a novelty position in the market.

"Apple's iPhone will sell in the U.S. in the coming quarters maybe 1 to 2 million units. That is quite small, considering that perhaps 170 million cell phones are being shipped in North America this year," Laikin told Kauppalehti. Apple's phone costs $499 to $599, while many Americans wish to buy a device for $99, he said.

"Apple will have to do other things in addition to creating hype, if it wants a large number of buyers for its phone," Laikin told the paper.

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