8/6/2008 1:11:00 PM
Eight megapixels spark most cut-throat Q4 in years
The major manufacturers are preparing for the most cut-throat Q4 in years, with five new eight-megapixel camera phones set to hit shops in October.
Mobile can reveal that three more premium camera phone releases will be announced in August, following the recent release of two eight-megapixel camera devices. LG is expected to join the Sony Ericsson C905 and Samsung’s new device (codename Innov8) with its own eight-megapixel camera phone.
The crucial Christmas market will be made even more fierce by the 3G iPhone and other highly anticipated releases, such as the Nokia N96, Samsung Omnia and the Sony Ericsson X1 Xperia.
The flooded market could cause high-profile casualties. With operators cooling on high-end phones, only one or two of the eight-megapixel handsets are expected to be snapped up by the networks.
Adam Davis, head of device management at 3, told Mobile: ‘We expect these releases to invigorate and excite the market, and encourage consumers to upgrade.
’But there are going to be big winners and big losers. We’re going through hard financial times in the UK and there are all these aspirational handsets coming out, so maybe it’s not the greatest time to do this.
’It will be interesting to see how the N96 holds up. It was announced a long time ago and is, in some ways, already outdated. But that said, the Nseries usually lands on its feet.’
GfK data shows a downturn in the number of consumers entering more expensive £30-£40 contracts.
For the past five quarters dating back from Q4 2007, around 28% of contracts were on tariffs between £30 and £40. However, in Q1 this year, that figure dropped to 19%.
Samsung VP Mark Mitchinson is also anticipating a tough battle. He said: ’It’s going to be a very aggressive final quarter and the sparring is taking place now.’