24 Sep 2012

Smartphone competition due to heat up

3:30 pm on 24 September 2012

Apples' latest iPhone 5 is slated to hit New Zealand stores on Friday, and judging by the frenzy it's already generated in the US that may not be soon enough for some.

But the competition is set to heat up, with some other smartphone handset makers trying to reclaim lost ground in time for the all-important Christmas rush.

Nokia, HTC and Motorola have all launched new smartphone models, hoping to attract greater numbers of users to better compete against market leaders, Apple and Samsung.

IDC market analyst Aman Bejaj says their financial survival may be on the line.

He says if vendors are not able to secure good uptake of their new devices it could threaten their survival.

Mr Bejaj says it's a two horse race between Apple and Samsung at the moment, so the other vendors need to be able to change that market dynamic.

IDC estimates about 44% of New Zealanders own a smartphone.

PC World editor Zara Baxter says greater competition does not bring down prices for the newest phones, though the price can fall quickly for those they've replaced.

She says what will bring down the price of phones is better plans.