release date. July 11, 2008. The Spanish public waited a year for the arrival of the Apple device after its first version was launched in the United States and some European countries.
sales. In the first three months, 6.9 million iPhone 3Gs were sold worldwide (according to Apple), ahead of the market leader in the PDA segment, Blackberry. These figures are clouded somewhat by the confusing results being handled in the Spanish market. It is estimated that between 75,000 and 80,000 units have been sold in our country, although neither Apple Spain nor Telefónica, responsible for its exclusive marketing in 16 countries around the world, want to give sales figures. Telefónica limits itself to assuring that the Spanish sales of the iPhone 3G represent 50% of the PDA market.
The starting strategy
The anticipation before it arrived in our country was one of the keys to its success, at least in the first few days. After a year of reading news about the wonders of the first version, Apple fans barricaded themselves at the gates of Telefónica to be among the first to snag the 3G version. Telefónica itself contributed to the phenomenon with a communication campaign, in which it announced that it would “give away” the 8 gig version in exchange for a two-year contract and a minimum monthly fee of 85 euros. The release was almost like a movie premiere. Telefónica has refurbished its old headquarters on Gran Vía street in Madrid and set up a flagship store for the event.
After the initial fever, we’ll have to wait until the end of the Christmas campaign to see if the iPhone will be a resounding success in Spain, as it has been in other markets. Telefónica is relying on its campaign in television and outdoor advertising, but above all on its sales network: “We will double the number of points of sale until we reach 2,700 by the end of the year, around 1,300 more. With this expansion plan, we want to respond to the great commercial success that the iPhone 3G has achieved since the beginning of its commercialization and meet the increasing demand ahead of the next Christmas campaign,” assure Telefónica sources.
Why is it winning?
The iPhone 3G combines phone, iPod, PDA, GPS maps… with a mobile broadband network. It is twice as fast as the first version and retains all the features that were all the rage when it was launched: the touch screen designed by Apple to guarantee the ease of use that has become the hallmark of the house, the design and the halo of radical innovation that has always characterized the brand…
Another fundamental key is that Apple entered the PDA market (until now aimed almost exclusively at a business audience) with the intention of reaching all consumers (therefore offering the same functionality as a PDA and a smartphone). Since its launch, products heralded as the iPhone killer have continued to appear, such as the Google model, the T-Mobile G1, the touchscreen BlackBerry or the Nokia 5800 Xpress Music.
Your biggest “weakness”? The price (299 euros for 8 GB and 359 euros for 16 GB) and the exclusive distribution in each country by a single telecom company, as is the case with Telefónica in Spain.