Brand loyalty is very important to some smartphone enthusiasts, with fans eagerly waiting in line to buy the latest version of the Apple iPhone or the Samsung Galaxy S device hours before the shops open.
However, others are more relaxed about the topic and only upgrade when they feel they really need to – and don't necessarily buy the new iteration from the same range of products they previously had.
With this in mind, the launch of a smartphone from a new provider could have the potential to really shake up the market.
New smartphones seem to be being launched all the time – so what would be any different in this situation?
Web giant Google is set to forge its own way in the smartphone market with the launch of its own branded device by the end of the year, according to a report in the Daily Telegraph.
The technology company is holding discussions with mobile operators on the topic of releasing a Google-branded phone. This will serve to significantly extend Google's move into hardware, where it has largely focused on software in the past.
With the Android mobile operating system already owned by Google, it is highly likely the device will be powered by that firmware. This could significantly expand Android's market share, as it already runs four out of five smartphones sold all over the world.
Phones made by partners such as LG and Huawei are endorsed by Google under the Nexus brand, so Google has always left the actual manufacture of mobiles to other companies in the past.
However, Google is set to take more control over design, manufacturing and software with the launch of a new handset.
Apple still dominates the high-end of the smartphone market, despite the fact that Android runs on the majority of products.
Google has struggled to ensure consistency of quality in Android products, given that it is free software used by a plethora of different manufacturers, all of which apply the software in different ways.
Making its own phone would allow Google complete control over how the software is implemented, meaning it would have the potential to be a very streamlined Android experience.
Ben Wood, an analyst at CCS Insight, said: “They are concerned that Android is fragmenting, that it needs to become a more controlled platform. I think they'll seek to control it more, more like Apple.”
Google has been planning a foray into hardware for some time, having appointed former president of Motorola Rick Osterloh to lead a new hardware division.