“The smartphone surge, it seems, is a case of a trading-up trend in technology that is running strong enough to weather the downturn. And as is so often true when it comes to adoption of new technology, the smartphone story is as much about consumer sociology and psychology as it is about chips, bytes and bandwidth.
For a growing swath of the population, the social expectation is that one is nearly always connected and reachable almost instantly via e-mail. The smartphone, analysts say, is the instrument of that connectedness â€” and thus worth the cost, both as a communications tool and as a status symbol”
The increasing popularity of BlackBerrys, iPhones and their kin owes as much to sociology as technology. Steve Lohr reports in The New York Times.