AT&T: iPhone appealing to the enterprise

Research In Motion (NASDAQ: RIMM) take heed: enterprise users are flocking to Apple's iPhone. Speaking at an investor conference in New York yesterday, Ron Spears, head of AT&T's business services division, said 40 percent of the company's iPhone sales since the beginning of 2010 have been to business customers, an area that has long been dominated by RIM's BlackBerry devices.

Spears would not say how many iPhones AT&T (NYSE:T) sold during the period, but analysts estimate that AT&T, which starting selling iPhones in 2007, has about 15 million iPhone users representing about 17 percent of its total customer base.

At the end of RIM's fiscal fourth quarter the company reported a total customer base of 41 million users worldwide. However, the company also reported that revenue from its largest customer--likely Verizon Wireless (NYSE:VZ)--declined to 20 percent of overall revenue for all of fiscal 2010, from 25 percent in the first three quarters of the fiscal year. Analysts speculate that the decline was due to Verizon increasing its smartphone portfolio to include more devices from Android and Palm.

RIM has been criticized recently for its lack of innovation compared with many of the new smartphones on the market. Critics content that BlackBerry smartphones, while efficient messaging devices, lack some of the usability factors--such as Web browsing--that other smartphones have. 

For more:
- see this Reuters article

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