LG Viewty Outsells Apple iPhone in Europe

UPDATE: The Extremely successful LG Viewty has been superceded by the new, beautiful and sleek LG Viewty Smart, which is set to be as successful as the classic KU990.

lg viewty vs apple iphone

LG has announced that they have sold 310,000 LG Viewty handsets since launch 5 weeks ago. I believe that this means the LG Viewty is outselling the iPhone in Europe, even though the Viewty hasn’t been supported with the massive PR and advertising budget of the iPhone. Apple, on the other hand have been very quiet with regards to their sales figures in Europe, I wonder why? 

Not that Apple are ordinarily so reticent. On the 30th Oct 2007, a few days after the launch of the new Mac operating system, the Apple PR machine released a statement proudly stating that “Apple Sells Two Million Copies of Mac OS X Leopard in First Weekend.” Since the European launch of the iPhone, however, on the 9th Nov, we haven’t heard a thing from the usually very vocal Apple.

What we do know is that the iPhone launch in the UK was a flop, considering all the hype and advertising £s which were spent. Since its launch on 9th November, official reports from O2 have said that “tens of thousands” of iPhone have been sold in the UK, one of largest European markets, quashing the silly numbers which were banded around like 100,000 sold in the first weekend, yeh right! 

It has also emerged that Apple have blocked the iPhone sales figures from been reported by Gfk, the UK research agency. Gfk collect EPOS (Electronic point of sale) data from all the major UK mobile phone retailers, then produces reports which are commercially available. As far as I’m aware this is first time that a mobile phone handset’s sales have been blocked, again, I wonder why?

Overall, there are no official figures available, but if the iPhone has only sold tens of thousands in the UK, it seems unlikely they have sold over 310,000 across Europe.

Why is the Viewty outselling the iPhone? Well…

  1. The Viewty is a better phone – The Viewty has a 5 mega-pixel camera vs. the iPhone’s 2mp, The Viewty is 3g enabled (HSDPA) which is way faster than the iPhone (2.5g), The Viewty has a Xenon flash so it can take pictures at night. I could go on but it will take up too much space, you will be better off reading this: 51 Reason not to buy the iPhone.
  2. The Viewty is available on all the major phone networks – 02, Orange, Vodafone, T-mobile, Virgin Mobile, and 3, unlike the iPhone that is just available on O2.
  3. The Viewty is available on a 12 month contract – unlike the iPhone, which has a minimum contract length of 18 months.
  4. The Viewty is a lot cheaper – The Viewty is FREE on an 12 month O2 contract (200 mins and 200 texts per month), for £30 per month, plus £55 cashback, so the total price over the contract length is £305, whereas the cheapest iPhone contract will cost you £899, (£269 for the handset, plus 18 months x £35 for O2 200 price plan, 200 mins and 200 texts.  Even if you compare the 18 month contracts the iPhone is 122% more expensive than the Viewty. (Viewty FREE on 18 02 month contract (200 mins + 200 text), £25 p/m minus £45 cashback = £405 total over contract length) 

LG Viewty to be launched in the USA?

So Apple better look out because if LG launch the Viewty in the US they will have a very serious competitor. Will the Viewty outsell the iPhone in Apple’s own country? Probably, I would have thought there are a lot of Americans who’d want a better phone than the iPhone, for a cheaper price, and one which is available on networks other than just AT&T.

iPhone won’t reach its potential

The iPhone interface and usability are amazing but Apple’s greed has resulted in the iPhone sales falling way short of its potential. The iPhone could have been market leader but when it costs so much, is only available on one network, and is only available in certain shops and websites, it is never going to reach its true potential.

If you’re interested in an indepedent review of the LG Viewty, check out Mobile-Phones-UK’s LG Viewty Review, or Recommended Buys’ LG Viewty Review

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38 thoughts on “LG Viewty Outsells Apple iPhone in Europe

  1. Haha, how stupid does this idiot short sighted reviewer feel now?? The viewty is yet another piece of LG rubbish, the iPhone keeps going from strength to strength. No manufacturer is going to catch up with apples app store in terms of available cheap content and a year on from this idiots review there is still nothing to touch the iPhone in terms of design, functionality and ease of use….

  2. Purely on technical point, I work for a company that provides ‘tools’ to allow law enforcement agencies to forensically analyise mobile phones. All the techies say the interface on the iphone is far superior than any of the 1,000+ phones that we can examine. How many have bought an iphone, none, they all use a varity of Blackberries.
    My wife has a viewty and it is excellent, just going off on a tangent my daughter bought an ipod touch which is good and I bought a Samsung YP-P2 because its better. If you want a toy with almost all the bells and whistles and you want to pay through the nose for it then the iPhone is the one for you.

  3. about the price in my country iphone almost 40$ cheaper i have never compared phones that way there is no perfect phone at all
    i have an iphone my brrother has the viewty the lg cmera is amazing specialy the video the options in the camera is realy pro but viewty doesnt has wifi so when we go to cafe i surf the net for freee he pays for 3G service in mb i wish i can find the perfect phone i mean amazing cam amazing audio player an wi fi u just cant find that even at SE the K series has pro cams but shity music player with low sound th W series has amazing audio player but shity cams

  4. seeing as they only talk about europe, how about posting the total worldwide sales between the 2?

    then lets see which one you say is better, seeing as you based it on sales.

  5. Sorry when i upgrade i want a full upgrade of all features, the iphone took 2 steps forward and 1 step back..unlike isheep i buy the best phone on the market (not blindly buy any old shite cos its a certain brand) but if apple had fixed the camera id of bought an iphone because it would have been the best phone on the market. When i saw the viewty i saw it upgraded everything over my previous k750i..i iphone didnt..then you factor price, contract etc

    besides iphone v2 will be out in 7 months so all the iphone v1 will be obselete, proper gadget freaks wait until 2nd gen..tis only fools who buy the 1st gen of new tech ;)

  6. Eh….. on contracts the customers gets the phone “free” do they……bollocks!!! They are effectively paying the phone up over the period of the minimum contract. What bleedin business makes money by allowing it’s goods to sell with no revenue return?!?!
    Put simply, the LG Viewty is the BETTER phone, more features and far higher spec. DUH, quite rightly in Europe therefore, it’s selling more than the iPhone (Apple nicked this name from Cisco by the way!)…..is it me or is the term Shareholder really a bloody pain in the arse to hear these days !?!?!?

  7. Re: comment 16 from Julian

    Julian,
    I’d say some of the components of the Viewty are definately higher end than iPhone (camera with 5mpix, flash and video in particular). And it has some features like MMS that aren’t on the iPhone (yet).
    But I’d put 3G chips on par with WiFi,
    8GB flash included much higher than 2GB that you have to provide via SD (not SDHC),
    the iPhone processor and OS ahead of the viewty (multitouch zoom and selection vs zoom with scroll whell and select w/ single touch and scroll with slide on the side).
    The iPhone screen has 67% more pixels than the viewty at 480×320 vs. 400×240
    The talk time on the iPhone is 35% longer than the viewty
    The viewty is quite a bit thicker – 25% or so which is important for something that will be carried in your pocket

    I’ve heard a fair number of complaints like this one
    http://reviews.cnet.co.uk/mobiles/0,39030113,49292601-39282355o,00.htm
    that claim the computer software for managing music on the phone is lacking which is a real strength of the Apple brand since iTunes is the largest on-line music seller and one of the leading on-line video sources.

    So, all of this is to say that while the viewty seems like a great phone, is popular, and can be had for a good price I don’t think it’s fair to call it a better phone.

    As to the pricing of the iPhone there is absolutely a large profit margin and it is priced to try to return market share and profits in the mix that Apple is targeting. It can command a profit margin due to the high desire people have for it. It’s probably not going to be the most prolific phone but that isn’t the goal of it. And yes the price of it may drop in the future but the profit margin will probably not change much – if you look at the iPod as a model for this the newer models are typically less costly than those they replace while advancing the technology at the same time. The economies of scale in the handset industry industry seem similar (e.g. 5 to 10 mil units a year is a good amount of sales) so I expect a similar trend.

    So does it make rational sense to buy an iPhone when there are cheaper alternatives with equivalent features? It seems to me this is the whole goal of brand marketing and it is used in every product I can think of. Is a Rolex watch that might last 100 years worth 100 times a Timex watch that might last 10 years? It is if you want to have a Rolex.

  8. “Thats Because the viewty is free you idiots
    thats like saying tap water is out selling Coca Cola
    This article is ridiculous stop apple bashing by the look of your web site you most probably use PC’s to do everything great”

    What are you talking about ? so what if its free? Thats shows you get more for free the paying over the odds for an iphone. Do you know apple make a profit from each call thats made from YOUR iphone, does this not show the true side of apple? Nokia doesn’t do this despite being a popular handset dealer, why should apple make a profit of the calls that you make, their not providing a network, only the handset. All you apple fans are gonna wake up one day and realize that apple are the new Microsoft and you truly have been shafted by your good ol friend, Steve.

  9. Hi Jbelkin,

    Thanks for your comments, however you dont really understand the UK mobile phone market.

    All phones in the UK are available for free, apart from the iPhone. So the LG Viewty hasn’t been given an extra discount, all phones are free and Apple knew that when they set their price.

    Also you are wrong about the iPhone selling “millions at FULL PRICE”, Apple dropped the price in the US by $200 (33% reduction) shortly after launch and before they sold anywhere near a million handsets. If it’s so good why did they drop the price so quickly? Did they run out of ultra loyal fan boys, quicker than they thought?

    Whats the betting Apple will drop the price of the UK iPhone early next year. I think they will be forced to dropped the price in Jan 2008 by about £100.

  10. Hi JJ,

    Do you really think I’m an anti-fan of Apple? Even though I said in the post “The iPhone interface and usability are amazing”.

    I think it has great potential but at the moment it is clearly overpriced, “under-specced” and over restricited, which is really holding it back in the UK.

    Julian.

  11. Hi Greg,

    You say “Everyone complains about the iPhone price, but nobody compares total cost of ownership (phone and plan and potentially intangibles)”, I certainly did compare the cost of ownership, did you actually read the whole post?

    On comparable tariffs the iPhone is 122% more expensive than the iPhone over the total contact length, when you consider the cost of the handsets and their tariff.

  12. >

    You GET what you pay for – of course, bargain hunters will choose free. So, LG hasn’t “sold” anything, they’ve managed to get a couple thousand people to accept a free phone with a contract – big whoop. That’s EXACTLY the point you are missing. It’s not hard to give away thousands of free things – and what the value people place on the Viewty? That’s right – ZERO. Would they pay hundreds of Euros or pound for it? No. Only the iPhone can sell hundreds of thousands if not millions at FULL PRICE – why? Because it’s the only phone worth full price. Right now, there is no competition because the only way the other companies compete is by pricing their phone at the ONLY price people are willing to pay – ZERO.

    Not a good term strategy.

  13. Hi Alan,

    Your example of the “Fort Taurus for many years sold more cars that the Mercedes C Class” doesn’t really work, as in most cases the Viewty is actually the higher spec phone and has more expensive components, HSDPA chip, 5 mega-pixel camera, etc. Its pure greed why the iPhone is so expensive and the fact that Apple has such loyal fans, as you can tell from the objective comments above. Mr Jobs takes advantage of all his loyal fans but charging such silly prices. Once the loyal fans have purchases the iphone and sales dry up, what does he do, hmmm… drop the prices as the general public are not that daft.

    Just for a few moments try to forget your passion for Apple and think about it logically.

  14. One can but wonder if this stuff would have been written if Dial-a-Phone were able to sell the iPhone? I suspect not.

    Julian you have a better chance of selling a fiction blockbuster than becoming a respected technology commentator. Now be a good boy and go flog a few Nokia mobiles, will you?

  15. I’m sorry, but you don’t know for certain how many iPhones are being sold. You are only making an assumption. Although the figures are probably lower than expected, it doesn’t mean they didn’t sell 310,000 or so. There could be lots of iPhones being sold that are going to be unlocked.

    I’m sure the Viewty is a nice handset with many more features than the iPhone and it’s subsidized. Good for LG. But Apple is making more money with it’s revenue sharing deal. I think it’s a good thing for Apple and shareholders. The iPhone will definitely outsell the Viewty as the Mac halo spread throughout the world.

    This more features viewpoint, doesn’t necessarily make the Viewty a better phone than the iPhone. Merely a cheaper phone with more features. Branding matters to some people and so does ease of use.

    After the iPhone becomes one-year-old, we’ll see which phone outsells the other.

  16. yeah, the LG is free and the iPhone is £269, not much surprise which ones goes faster,m strange that you need a whole page to explain that!!

    That does not meen that the LG is better though, does it?

    its the USER INTERFACE which makes the iPhone the clear WINNER.

  17. Ejwkkep does make a good point even if you don’t like the sarcasm.

    FREE VS $400.00

    So if you’re short on cash but want to be in the latest
    “touch my cellphone screen” phenomenon
    it’s a pretty obvious choice.

  18. I agree with the first comment, the Iphone is the first phone to break with the tradition of artificially making the phone free by bundling it with a tariff, this article is not comparing like with like. How many iphones are Dial-a-phone allowed to sell, compared with the LG. To take this article as anything more than ‘advertorial’ for both your company and the products it sells would be foolish.

    I wonder what tone the article would take (if it would even exist) if you were able to sell iPhone tomorrow. Anyone who has used an iPhone knows how amazing it is, irrespective of Apples and Macs.

    The sad thing is it took Apple to show the mobile industry how to make a phone!

  19. Let’s face it, the bigger difference here is one goes for free while the other sells for a whooping 269 quid! Apple has got this completly wrong, instead let O2 subsidize your phone, forget about taking a slice of their income and increase your handset margin. Jobs is selling handsets just like computers and it doens’t work like this.
    by the way, the iPhone is miles better than the Viewty imo.

  20. Apple sucks balls. AT&T does too. he blew it, fucking steve jobs. and thoes fat-ass greedy fuckers @ AT&T! ooohhhhhh….. look at us, we have the least dropped calls of any network. my ass they do, they fuckin drop them 3 out of 10 calls. 30% of all calls dropped! FUCK!!!

    and i thought verizon sucked, WOW!

  21. If the Viewty is free, the comparison and conclusions lose much of their luster.

    Everyone complains about the iPhone price, but nobody compares total cost of ownership (phone and plan and potentially intangibles). At least in the US, this is where the iPhone wins, since it breaks even ($) with phone/plan combo, but user experience (intangible) is by far the winner.

    And as far as tying to one network, yes, it would be nice to have it available across all telcoms, but Apple is also innovating with that one network. ATT in the US is working with Apple to help on back end infrastructure, while Apple does the front end service (e.g., visual voice). Having one partner committed to that relationship is key, in my mind. And this is where some of the revenue sharing is going…the funds for future innovation.

  22. Interesting points, but consider the following:

    The Fort Taurus for many years sold more cars that the Mercedes C Class in the US.
    Both were sedans, but the Taurus had more interior room, bigger engine, cost much less to buy, cost less to maintain, and had more available options for audio players and other accessories. The Taurus was widely available at many sales points across the US while the C Class was available at only a relatively small number of sales points.

    If Mercedes had only lowered their prices and put in more distribution channels they could have sold many more cars.

    Despite all of this, there is no way to say the Taurus was “better” than the C Class or that the C Class fell short of its potential.

    Like the phones you mention, the two cars are produced and sold in different ways with different goals.

  23. Sounds like a nice phone for the mass consumer market. It has several nice features and it’s very inexpensive, especially when subsidized. Undoubtedly will sell more units than the iPhone. But it’s not a smartphone, so comparing it to the iPhone is comparing Apples and oranges.

    The iPhone is not a mass market phone, but a special market phone for which Apple’s stated goal is to sell 1% of the market (or around 6% of the smartphone market).

    The Viewty will fit many people’s needs. But not those who want the larger, higher resolution screen, Wi-Fi, larger memory and battery capacity, iPod capabilities, and more powerful processer capabilities of the iPhone. Not to mention iTunes, ebooks, calendaring, powerful third party applications, GPS and eventual VOIP.

    The two phones address distinctly different needs and different customers.

  24. Thats Because the viewty is free you idiots

    thats like saying tap water is out selling Coca Cola

    This article is ridiculous stop apple bashing by the look of your web site you most probably use PC’s to do everything great

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