The recent study by Rubicon about how people use the iPhone came to several interesting conclusions, but the one that resonates with me, a baby boomer, is that 28% of respondents said “strongly” that they often carry the iPhone instead of a notebook PC. Another 29% “mildly” agreed. Only 21% “strongly” disagreed.
I think the question made sense more for the older generation (over 30), because the younger generation wouldn’t answer this question the same way — they don’t carry notebook PCs as much because they already use phones for texting. Roughly half of all iPhone users, according to this study, are under age 30 and 15% are students, and I think it’s likely this entire half of the iPhone population didn’t react the same way to the question. Students, for example, couldn’t use an iPhone in class in place of a laptop.
Besides, younger people don’t feel the weight as much. A large percentage of the older-generation users — those who once carried laptops around for email and browsing, and baby boomers whose shoulders are now stooped — are carrying iPhones instead. I’m certainly one. Neck strain is a thing of the past.
Another interesting conclusion is that among the one-third of iPhone users who carry a second mobile phone, Research in Motion’s Blackberry was the most popular second phone, carried by almost one iPhone user in ten. Another question skewed to the older generation — Blackberries are popular mostly with business users in enterprises, who need them to access Microsoft Exchange mail servers. As this capability reaches the iPhone, the need for a second Blackberry evaporates.
Another study from iSuppli points out that owners of competing products — such as Nokia’s N92 or the Blackberry — use their phones for voice communications 71.7% the time compared to iPhone owners spending just 46.5% of their time with voice calls. The conclusion is that Apple has come closer than any other company to making a truly convergent device used for multiple purposes.