Opportunities for resellers in the smartphone device market are based on providing value-added applications such as mobile email, according to an industry representative.
Speaking to ARN at the launch of the next series of O2 mobile handheld devices, Brightpoint general manager Australia, Felix Wong, said the channel should focus on finding the killer application for smart technologies.
"Smartphone devices are much more content rich so the question is what is going to be the next killer application and it looks like it may be mobile email," he said.
"The opportunity for resellers is going to be for applications that link email, like MS Exchange 2003 and so on. It's not the device but the solution that is the opportunity."
Brightpoint and Tech Pacific have been named local distributors for O2's new range of converged devices.
The vendor's latest additions, unveiled in Sydney last week, include the data-centric XdaII, based on Windows Mobile software, and the Xphone II. O2 has struck an agreement with Optus for content for the devices.
O2 vice-president, John Featherstone, said the two distributors would help the company reach out to the telecommunications, IT and consumer electronics markets.
"We feel they counterbalance each other because of their unique capability to reach specific channels in the market," he said.
O2 is one of many hardware manufacturers chasing a share of the growing market for converged devices, which, according to analysts, will eventually eclipse traditional PDAs.
IDC associate analyst, Mercie Clement, said the strong growth in the smart handheld device (SHD) market in Q2 2004 was driven by converged, largely data centric devices.
"This trend is expected to continue as vendors in the space expand and improve their offerings as well as work more closely with wireless carriers to offer better plans," she said. "It is also key that vendors and carriers work together to educate the end-users on the full functionality of the respective devices, especially in the small business space."