Analyst called iPhone an ‘enigma’ but that doesn’t stop him from predicting its failure

Apple Store“Less than three months remain until AT&T is expected to launch the iPhone in the U.S. Both Apple and AT&T have opted to remain mum about crucial price and performance details — even as they ramp up the hype. It’s a strategy that risks a backlash, particularly since the iPhone does not fit comfortably into either the business or luxury phone categories,” Tero Kuittinen writes for RealMoney.com.

Kuittinen writes, “Tellingly, this week’s big news item about the iPhone wasn’t about the device. It was about the hype around it, as AT&T announced that more than a million people have already inquired about the phone. This is an impressive number, but consumers are in an information vacuum. Unusually, AT&T has not revealed either key pricing information or key performance figures that would enable consumers to make an informed decision about the device.”

Kuittinen writes, “Let me give an example: With AT&T, you can get a reasonably hot new smartphone, such as the Samsung Blackjack…”

MacDailyNews Take: Blah, blah, blah… Kuittinen goes into the usual uninformed, ill-advised, and just plain stupid feature checklist comparison, thereby missing the point entirely: Apple’s iPhone is a usable whole, designed for the user, not the carrier, with Apple’s typical meticulous attention to detail; iPhone is designed to be intuitive and actually work (hint: the UI matters, Treo… er, Tero). It’s iPod all over again, stupid.

Kuittinen continues, “Without question, there is an army of Apple fans so fervent that they will not care about the iPhone’s price or performance. But how large is it? Surely it is millions in America and millions outside the core U.S. market. But I don’t think it is 10 million buyers within 12 months of the launch, the figure largely mooted over the past few months… The iPhone is not a smartphone. It has the advanced display and weight of a smartphone, but it lacks an open operating system and vast application library. This does not fit the ‘business phone’ market, which makes up most of the high-end phone sales globally.”

MacDailyNews Note: Apple’s clearly-stated goal is 10 million iPhone units by the end of 2008, not “within 12 months of the launch.” So much for moving the goal posts, Tero.

“The people now inquiring about the iPhone don’t know the key details about the model. Apple and AT&T apparently want it that way. I don’t think this is a bright idea,” Kuittinen writes.

Full article (subscription required) here.
Kuittinen complains that nobody knows enough about Apple iPhone to want to buy it and then illogically proceeds to predict how iPhone will fare in the marketplace. The only ones really in an information vacuum are Kuittinen’s poor readers. We’ve iCal’ed Kuittinen’s prognostications for future review. Not only can’t Kuittinen see the future, he can’t grasp the concept of hundreds of millions of dollars in free publicity, either.

Oh, by the way, according to RealMoney, “Tero Kuittinen is a senior product specialist for Nordic Partners, Inc., a pan-Nordic brokerage firm. Before that, he worked in the telecom equity research groups of Sanford C. Bernstein (NYC) and Opstock (Helsinki), as well as a strategist for various Finnish mobile content start-ups.”

With apologies to Paul Harvey, “And now you know… the rest of the story.”

Contact RealMoney.com / Tero Kuittinen here.

Related iPhone naysayers, hacks, FUDmeisters, future golden parachutists, one dancing monkey boy who hopefully isn’t going anywhere except down with the ship, and the usual bloated windbag named John C. Dvorak:
Dvorak trolls: ‘Apple should pull the plug on the iPhone’ – March 28, 2007
Ballmer: Apple not a hot brand, our partners will make look-alike iPhones, I gotta go – March 27, 2007
Analyst: ‘Apple iPhone is little more than another handset to operators’ – March 14, 2007
Microsoft’s Mundie: Windows Mobile does more than Apple’s iPhone does today – March 10, 2007
How Steve Jobs blew his iPhone keynote: premature announcement hurts Apple – March 09, 2007
Computerworld’s Haskin: Apple seems to be repeating Newton mistakes with iPhone – February 26, 2007
Palm CEO can’t stop talking about Apple iPhone – February 19, 2007
Telstra exec tells Apple to ‘stick to its knitting’ as iPhone looms – February 15, 2007
Palm CEO: ‘We don’t want to follow design fads’; Nokia CEO challenges Apple over iPhone – February 13, 2007
RIM co-CEO doesn’t see threat from Apple’s iPhone – February 12, 2007
Microsoft’s Bach talks Apple iPhone, DRM, Zune, and more – February 09, 2007
FUD Alert: Apple iPhone ‘isn’t very practical’ and a ‘security risk’ for business – January 24, 2007
New Zealand Herald scribe: Apple iPhone ‘the most over-designed device in the history of humanity’ – January 22, 2007
The amount of iPhone FUD is truly stunning – January 22, 2007
Analyst: ‘iPhone’s willful disregard of global handset market will come back to haunt Apple’ – January 18, 2007
Microsoft CEO Ballmer laughs at Apple iPhone – January 17, 2007
Bloomberg writer: Apple iPhone won’t make long-term mark; will only appeal to a few gadget freaks – January 15, 2007
Dvorak on Apple iPhone: ‘I think Apple can do wrong and I think this is it’ – January 13, 2007
USA Today writer: Apple iPhone is an ‘ordinary, average product’ at heart – January 12, 2007
FUD Alert: Analyst – I am pretty skeptical Apple’s iPhone can succeed – January 11, 2007

Related articles:
The massive FUD campaign against Apple’s iPhone ramps up – January 10, 2007
The only thing really wrong with Apple’s iPhone is its name – January 09, 2007

42 Comments

  1. I’m a non-enthusiast where mobs are concerned.

    Buttt… the iPhone has me aslaver as it’s the first mob with a decent interface.

    We’ll see, but I’d judge that this person will eat his words in a few months.

  2. Uhm, he’s just protecting Nokia’s turf. I mean if he can call us “Apple fans” who don’t care about “price or performance”, then I can just assume he’s a Finn who only cares about spreading FUD for Nokia.

  3. “Without question, there is an army of Apple fans so fervent that they will not care about the iPhone’s price or performance.”

    God help me….I hate being treated as a moron. If it doesn’t perform, Mac users won’t buy it. Period. Stupid friktard.

  4. “…the iPhone does not fit comfortably into either the business or luxury phone categories,” Tero Kuittinen writes for RealMoney.com.”

    Falkirk: I’m trying to be respectful of this analyst, but it doesn’t fit into the luxury phone category? Why not? It’s the hottest phone in the world and promise to be a status symbol. What luxury phone has an advantage over the iphone?

    Falkirk: Kuittinen does give a reason why the iphone doesn’t fit into the business category – no third party software. Before I accept that argument, I’d like to hear about a few of these “killer” third party aps that third parties provide. It’s my understanding that most of them are poor attempts to provide some of the functionality that the iphone has built in. But I’m willing to be educated. What great third party ap is available now that the iphone won’t be able to offer?

    Kuittinen goes on to state that the “hype” surrounding the iphone is a bad thing. An earlier analyst estimated that that “hype” was worth 400 million in free advertising. And that’s bad because…?

    Kuittinen then goes on to take a major strength of Apple – it’s loyal customer base – and turn it into a weakness by stating that the Apple fan base cannot be counted in the 10s of millions. True, but how many companies would kill to know that their product will get off to an excellent start because of it’s millions of loyal customers? Kuittinen, like others, seems to assume that people are loyal to Apple because they are under some kind of spell rather than to understand that customers are loyal to Apple becasue Apple pays fanatical attention to providing a great customer experieince. I guess what Kuittinen is saying is that Apple has little hope to sell the iphone to anyone who isn’t already an Apple customer. When you put it that way, you see how rediculous the “are there enough Apple fans” criticism is.

  5. How do you predict a failure of a product that has not been relased. No one even knows the full features of the iPhone yet. All FUD pure and simple with no facts to go with it. Just another writer looking for hits on his webpage or something.

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