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6/28/2010
08:06 AM
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Knock-offs Impact Smartphone Market

Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery, but chances are the executives at Apple and Research in Motion are not enamored with the attention their smartphones are receiving. Chinese manufacturers have developed clones, which are proving to be quite popular.

Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery, but chances are the executives at Apple and Research in Motion are not enamored with the attention their smartphones are receiving. Chinese manufacturers have developed clones, which are proving to be quite popular.ABI Research found that devices, such as BlueBerry, are having a major impact on the low-end of the smartphone space. While these devices do not possess the features and capabilities of the models that they emulate, they have become quite popular and are one reason why that market segment will see 219 million units old by the end of 2010.

The influx of these new devices could have an impact on small and medium businesses. In some cases, users may be unwilling to pay the $500 to $700 associated with high end phones, such as RIM's Blackberry Storm and Apple's iPhone. Perhaps, they will opt for one of these cost alternatives.

However, such decisions could create management problems for companies. Figuring out how to monitor accepted devices, such as the iPhone, has been a challenge for these businesses. They may have even more difficulty if these rogue devices start to invade their networks, which is becoming more likely.

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