I was intrigued to read a dissenting voice among the iPhone hysteria - it seems it's not a dead cert to be an unquestionable hit after all.

Analysts at IDC have grabbed a handful of spanners and thrown them into the workings of the Apple hype machine, by pointing out a few things that could hinder the iPhone's effortless rise to the top of the mobile telephony tree.

Have a look at it here.

Now, I'm not one to argue with an Chris Hazelton at IDC. I suspect he knows what he's talking about. Nor am I one to question the wisdom of Steve Jobs - in the creation of the iPhone in the first place, or in his prediction that Apple will shift 10 million by the end of 2008.

Of course the IDC report is centred around the success of the iPhone - as in the idea, the phenomenon, the inanimate object. But in practical terms, all the iPhone's potential snags point to the fact that the iPhone is going to represent a lousy deal for actual people, at least in the short term.

For a start, early adopting consumers are going to struggle to get hold of one. One shop in New York has a waiting list of nearly 2,000. And most stores are expecting fewer than 40 iPhones to shift at launch. According to M:Metrics, as many as one in nine Britons want to get one. It looks to me like the iPhone Club will be way too exclusive for one in nine of us to join.

Even if you track one down, you're going to have no choice as to what network you go with. AT&T have the iPhone sewn up in the US, and it's expected that Apple will also supply it exclusively through one network in Europe too. If you want an iPhone, you can forget about shopping around for the best talk/text/data deal, as is the custom now.

And it's only going to be available on a long-term contract too, so if you want an iPhone at launch you're going to have to be at the end of your current deal, or you'll have to cancel it early, which will cost you money.

Of course, you can wait until your contract runs out - by the time my 18-month contract runs out I expect they'll be an upgraded or second generation iPhone available.

That's not the point though - the single network, long-term contract-only policy means it's going to be a massive hassle to get hold of it in a capacity that lets you use it cost effectively. Just as the iPod's reduced price has allowed it to become ubiquitous, the iPhone is going to be just the opposite.

Oh well. I'm stuck with my tiny-buttoned Sony Ericsson W880i for another 18 months anyway.