Palm Investor Predicts Many iPhone Converts

Whoa, brother. Talk about lighting the world on fire with a single interview. Palm investor Roger McNamee has reportedly stated that loyal iPhone users will be jumping at the chance to ditch their cellphone in favor of the upcoming Pre (a Sprint exclusive), which has led to all sorts of opinions on the matter. So we figured, why not one more?

The exact quote was this: "You know the beautiful thing: June 29, 2009, is the two-year anniversary of the first shipment of the iPhone. Not one of those people will still be using an iPhone a month later." The "month later" bit refers to a month after Palm's much hyped new smartphone launches sometime in the first half of this year, and while it's perfectly understandable for someone with a vested interest in the success of Palm to make such a statement, we're not quite sure the logic even works out.

For starters, AT&T made a smart move when it allowed first generation iPhone owners to buy iPhone 3G handsets at a new contract price so long as they agreed to renew their contract again. This statement completely disregards that fact. The vast majority of people who paid for Apple's original iPhone won't be free and clear of an AT&T contract come June 2009; in reality, they'll be halfway into another contract given that so many of them opted to pick up an iPhone 3G and extend their term of commitment. So in reality, Mr. McNamee would need the Pre to come out in June of 2010 for this magical formula of perfect timing to all work out.

All that aside, we're still confident that some iPhone users will jump ship in order to see what the buzz is all about, but we highly doubt that it will be any significant number. We haven't heard of any large number of utterly dissatisfied iPhone users, nor have we seen any huge groups of subscribers looking to leave AT&T for Sprint. We figure that Palm's Pre has a better chance of attracting attention from customers with carriers other than AT&T, and moreover, from existing Sprint users who have yet to bite the smartphone bullet. But look, you can't blame Roger for refocusing the attention on his pride and joy months after it was showcased at CES, right?

Tags:  iPhone, Palm, Pre, Palm Pre