SPOTLIGHT: Metric: Apple eyes 3.5 million iPhones


Market research firm iSuppli has forecast that Apple may sell about 3.5 million iPhones by the end of this year, after selling about 1 million already, as of last Sunday. It's already the best-selling smartphone on the market, and sales were helped by the recent much-criticized price cut, according to Piper Jaffray.

It's hard to see what that means to wireline-centric carriers right now, but consider the future prospects: Apple, like Google, may bid on 700 Mhz spectrum which could put it in direct competition with the telco who own the major wireless carriers. Apple's iPhone success might also further drive traditional mobile device leaders, like Nokia, more into the services sector, where they too will compete with telcos' wireless units. In addition, the iPhone's fixed-mobile capabilities may somehow figure into telcos' future plans--if anyone besides AT&T ever gets to sell it. See FierceWireless for more.

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