1Apple iPad 2
Although Apple has said the iPad 2 and its iPhone don’t necessarily compete with each other, that’s not really the case. Both devices are running the same software, and they both offer multitouch functionality. Considering the economy isn’t turning around and many people are on a budget, some folks might opt for the iPad 2, which they might perceive to offer more value for their money, rather than go with the iPhone 5.
The LG Revolution is arguably one of the more capable smartphone competitors on the market right now. The device comes with a 1GHz Snapdragon processor and runs Android 2.2 “Froyo.” Most importantly, it allows for support with Verizon’s 4G network, making it a top choice for those who want to surf the Web over LTE. Combine that with its large 4.3-inch display, and the iPhone 5 might have a difficult competitor in the smartphone space.
3Sony Ericsson Xperia Play
So far, the Sony Ericsson Xperia Play hasn’t caught on as well as the handset maker had hoped. However, that doesn’t mean it can be counted out. The Android 2.3 device is heavily involved in the gaming business as the world’s first PlayStation-certified smartphone. It even includes slide-out controls for folks to play advanced games on the device. Considering the importance of gaming in Apple’s App Store and how integral solid gaming experiences will be on the iPhone 5, there’s no reason to suggest the Xperia Play won’t have at least a small impact on sales of Apple’s next smartphone.
4Upcoming Windows Phone-Based Nokia Smartphones
Since the iPhone 5 will likely be on store shelves toward the end of this year and into 2012, the device will need to square off against Windows Phone-based Nokia smartphones. Though some scoff at those devices, Nokia is a major brand internationally, and with its “Mango” update, Windows Phone 7 will be more compelling than ever. If Nokia can deliver the right hardware, the iPhone 5 might feel some pressure from the handset maker’s Windows Phone 7 devices.
5Samsung Droid Charge
The Samsung Droid Charge is arguably one of the most compelling iPhone alternatives on the market right now. The device features a slick design and a big 4.3-inch display. It runs Android 2.2 and can connect to Verizon’s 4G LTE network. When the iPhone 5 launches, the Droid Charge might just be the device’s best competition. After all, Samsung devices are popular and the company has earned the trust of consumers. Look for a Samsung-iPhone 5 battle in the coming months.
6RIM BlackBerry Torch
When it comes to the consumer market, Apple won’t need to worry about Research In Motion’s BlackBerry Torch. However, Apple will need to be concerned with the Torch in the enterprise market. RIM is still a huge player in the corporate world, and many companies will be attracted to the Torch, which is priced at just $50 with a two-year commitment. The iPhone 5 will have trouble competing in the corporate world as long as BlackBerry smartphones, including the Torch, still appeal to IT decision-makers.
7HTC Evo 3D
Although HTC has had some difficulty competing with Apple in the past, the company’s Evo 3D is one of the most interesting releases from the firm yet. In addition to its 4.3-inch display and Android operating system, the Evo 3D comes with 3D functionality. That feature, while still in its early stages on mobile devices, is starting to catch on with consumers. If the iPhone 5 lacks 3D when it launches, some customers might opt for HTC’s unique functionality rather than stick with the 2D world. Will the Evo 3D obliterate iPhone 5 sales? Of course not. But for some customers, it might have the features that could make them opt for HTC’s handset over the iPhone 5.
8Google Nexus S 4G
There’s quite a bit to like about the Google Nexus S 4G. The device allows for 4G connectivity, it runs Android, and it has a nice, 4-inch display. Most importantly, it has the Google name affixed to it, which automatically puts it on the same playing field as the iPhone 5. If the Nexus S 4G were running on Verizon’s or AT&T’s network, it would be a bigger threat to the iPhone 5. But even without support from those carriers, the device could cut into some of the iPhone 5’s sales.
9RIM BlackBerry PlayBook
In the corporate world, there are finite budgets dedicated to buying mobile devices. And as recent history has shown, some companies are warming to the idea of bringing the iPhone to their operations. However, with the launch of the BlackBerry PlayBook, some of those companies might have a change of heart. The BlackBerry PlayBook delivers touch-screen functionality—something companies are starting to like—and offers the business features, such as BlackBerry Enterprise Server, that the corporate world is after. In the consumer space, the BlackBerry PlayBook won’t hurt iPhone 5 sales, but in the enterprise, it just might.
10Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1
If the iPad 2 could cut into sales of Apple’s iPhone 5, there’s no reason to suggest the top Android tablet on the market, the Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1, won’t do the same. The tablet is an ideal choice for consumers who don’t want to invest in a new smartphone but are looking for an iPhone- or iPad-like experience. As mentioned, the economy isn’t turning around quickly enough, and there are still many consumers who are on a budget. Considering the Galaxy Tab 10.1 with WiFi costs just $499.99 to start and is available now, some consumers might be willing to spend cash on the tablet immediately rather than wait for the iPhone 5 that might or might not come out later this year.