Summer of Smartphones — iPhone 4 vs. EVO star in the Apple/Android Battle

Since the original iPhone launched in June of 2007, the summer months have typically played host to a wide variety of major smartphone launches. In recent years, we’ve seen second and third generation iPhone releases, the launch of Samsung’s Instinct, and debut of Palm’s webOS with the launch of the Pre — all in the month of June.  This year is no exception, with the launch of the HTC EVO 4G at Sprint and the Apple iPhone 4 both launching with massive advertising campaigns and much prognostication among internet pundits as to which device is the best smartphone available.

I’m not here to settle which is best — in my opinion, they are both fantastic (though very different) devices — but I did want to see how the EVO’s post-launch traffic compared to the iPhone’s as the weeks went on — as this is the best measure of sustained consumer interest. With the EVO getting perhaps the most publicized launch of an Android phone (outside of Motorola’s first DROID at Verizon), I compared iPhone 4′s traffic at Apple.com to the EVO’s traffic at Sprint.com (note I used Apple.com rather than ATT.com since we’ve seen Apple is the primary destination for iPhone traffic, just as Sprint is the primary destination for EVO traffic).

Read as: iPhone 4 interest at Apple.com was 33% lower the week after launch, while EVO 4G interest at Sprint.com was 69% lower the week after launch.

As is typically with just about all device launches, both devices’ traffic peaked during launch week.  However, even during launch week, at the EVO’s peak, nearly 3 times more people researched the iPhone 4 than the EVO – and that gap has grown dramatically in subsequent weeks.  The EVO’s traffic 3 weeks following launch is 86% lower than it was during launch week; the iPhone 4 also experienced a decline, but it was not nearly as severe.  To put this in perspective, the EVO was still one of the top 5 launches in 2010 and one of the most successful launches of an Android device across all carriers.  It just wasn’t able to match up with the onslaught of the iPhone, which sold a stunning 1.7M units in its first 3 days of availability.

It seems, after several years of trying, no one phone will ever be an "iPhone Killer."Â  However, the EVO represents just one of a whole fleet of capable Android devices available across all of the major carriers, and Android as a whole outsold the iPhone and BlackBerry in Q2 2010.  While iPhone may have won the battle against the EVO, the war against Android is far from decided.