I just read a very interesting post at RoughlyDrafted.com titled “Apple’s iPhone: Disrupting Mobile Service“(tb) that describes how Apple could shake up the mobile phone industry with their rumored iPhone (or whatever they end up calling it).
The mobile phone market is very fragmented with mobile phone service providers dictating what technology gets implemented in mobile phones. I agree with Daniel that Apple is in a good position to shake things up. The mobile phone service providers will not do anything that will jeopardize their model of charging customers per minute or per MB, and they will certainly not make it easy for customers to switch over to Wi-Fi and the use of VOIP over it. Apple can shake things up by creating a platform and user experience that is seamless between the phone, the Mac/PC, and any other devices that are used to view information and content.
Also, I believe the killer feature on the iPhone would be an embedded version of the Safari web browser. Why? Look at what is driving Web 2.0 on the desktop; AJAX-enabled web browsers, accessible high-speed Internet, and what follows is the flurry of amazing web applications that allow users to replace their desktop applications with online versions. Give web developers the canvas and paint, and they will create their masterpieces for the mobile web 2.0.