I was just telling a friend that I couldn’t name 10 people that I know between the ages of 12 and 45 that don’t have some type of email. Whether it be work email or personal email, I am hard pressed to come up with a list of 10 that have no email address whatsoever.
This got me to thinking about the Cingular Wireless announcement that they will be offering AOL, Yahoo, and Hotmail personal email to their subscribers on various mobile phone models for as little as $5 per month. This leads me to the question of if we will start to QWERTY keyboards on more and more cell phones over time.
The average Joe isn’t going to shell out the cash for a BlackBerry or BlackBerry competitor just to check email once or twice a day, howerver, 5 bucks a month isn’t too bad so long as it doesn’t suck to send and receive email. Unfortunately, it is really quite terrible to try to send an email from a numeric keypad. I am not saying that it cannot be done, I am just saying that I wouldn’t shell out 5 bucks a month for the privilege.
Would I be a bit more apt to spend a little more on a really cool looking cell phone with a keyboard and an additional 5 or so bucks a month to be able to email and IM folks? Absolutely. Now, I am a CrackBerry addict so this just seems logical to me, but what about the average Joe? Will they spend the extra money? Last time a checked, T-Mobile sold more than a few Side-Kicks so I dare say yes to the average Joe as well. At least the 16 to 30 year old average Joes.
I think that there could be a huge market for Camera phones with QWERTY keyboards making it easier to send and receive email directly from the phone.