Image via Wikipedia
In his post Mordy Gilden asks What makes a Smartphone ‘Smart’. He gives a few examples of what might be construed as a Smartphone, but with a plethora of phones from different tiers having similar functionality that we may attribute to a Smartphone, how do we define what it really is.
I think “Smartphone” was a term coined by marketers to differentiate their PDA-cum-Phone from the rest of pack. A few examples:
- Microsoft’s PocketPC spinoff called Smartphone which looked more like a phone and along with everything that PocketPC did, could also make calls
- Palm’s PDAs with calling features
- Nokia’s Communicator… a huge, bulky handheld PC which could “also” do calls.
“Smartphone” was a marketing term associated with hi-end phones, a brand if you will, with a feature set that identified with it. But as the industry progressed the same feature set was available in the not so high-end phones. In the minds of end-user, however, “Smartphone” was still associated with that same feature-set, hence our current dilemma of what constitutes a Smartphone.
Maybe we should go back to the tiering structure Low-tier, Mid-tier, High-tier. We’ll probably need to add “Ultra-low-tier” (<$30) and “ultra-high-tier” to the fray as well :) . Or maybe we need to come up with a new term for the high-end phones.
What do you think?