The 3G S debuted nationwide Friday with buyers enthusiastic but lines smaller than those that formed outside Apple stores for the first- and second-generation iPhones in 2007, the Los Angeles Times reported Saturday.
With the 3G S, iPhone buyers for the first time could pre-order online, which may have accounted for the smaller lines, the Times said.
Service costs may have been another factor, said Tina Teng, an analyst with iSuppli Corp. in El Segundo, Calif.
"That can put a cap on their growth," said Teng, who estimates Apple will sell 18.7 million iPhones in 2009 for a 10 percent share of the market.
Last year, Apple sold 13.7 million iPhones worldwide, capturing 8.4 percent of the so-called smart phone market, Teng said.
The iPhone itself costs $199 to $299 for new AT&T subscribers and current subscribers who are eligible for an upgraded phone.
Copyright 2009 by United Press International.