Roughly 16 years after the format was introduced, smartphones
are now being used by more than one billion individuals
worldwide. First popularized by Research In Motion (NASDAQ:
), which created the BlackBerry line of devices, smartphones
attracted worldwide attention after Apple (NASDAQ:
) introduced the iPhone in 2007. Google (NASDAQ:
) created the leading Android alternative, which has gone on to
become the world's most successful mobile operating system.
, the billion user mark was first crossed during the third
quarter. While two American companies currently lead the
industry, Finland-based Nokia (NYSE:
) was credited with creating the first modern smartphone more
than one decade ago. Nokia's device, which was marketed as the
Communicator, was popular among business users. The BlackBerry
followed in its footsteps. It was not until Apple entered the
market -- and introduced the "apps" concept -- that smartphones
began to receive mainstream acceptance.
In the years before the iPhone arrived, one of the most
popular phones was a simple and thin clam shell device from
Motorola called the RAZR. As a basic mobile phone, the original
RAZR did not feature any of the modern bells and whistles that
accompany today's smartphones. Consumers were attracted to the
sleek design, which was unlike any other phone on the market.
Motorola is no longer considered to be a major player in the
mobile device industry. When Google announced that it wanted to
acquire the firm, many wondered if Motorola could rebound. Thus
far that has not been the case.
While Nokia is still a top contender worldwide, it continues
to lose market share to Apple and Samsung. Nokia's presence has
all but diminished in the United States, but the company hopes to
change that when it releases the
. Like all of Nokia's smartphones, the Lumia 920 uses the Windows
Phone operating system developed by Microsoft (NASDAQ:
). This will be the first Nokia device (followed by the Lumia
820) to adapt Windows Phone 8.
Microsoft will release its new mobile operating system on
October 26. In addition to Nokia, Samsung and HTC recently
announced that they are building new devices for the
In September, Apple unveiled its latest smartphone -- the
long-awaited iPhone 5. During the product's first weekend of
availability, Apple sold
more than five million units
, beating the previous opening weekend record set by the iPhone
(c) 2012 Benzinga.com. Benzinga does not provide investment
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