The limited display of a mobile phone has been a major impediment in developing good 3D graphics for these devices. But now with the producers introducing quality displays and also increasing their size, the wind of change can be sensed among graphics developers.
Although many expected tridimensional graphics to be used mostly in games, there is currently a bigger stake, the user interface, because not everybody uses mobile games, but everybody uses a phone's interface. The amount of data contained by a mobile device has suffered a major increase over the last few years so a new way of handling it is required. Also, the tendency is to make the interface and most of the applications more intuitive and easy to use for every person and the implementation of 3D menus seems to be the solution to this.
Probably the most interesting application of 3D graphics in mobile phones will be a navigation system using both network and satellite positioning. An accurate representation of buildings and terrain will require devices capable of displaying and processing 3D images very quickly so that the user should get a real time display of the movement.
It is most likely to see a battle between the Nvidia and AMD, the two giants announcing new graphics chipsets for mobile devices, capable of rendering complex images at a decent frame rate. This competition on the market is a positive thing because it will lead to better technology and lower prices, just like on the PC market. An impediment would be the fact that most phones use different platforms and there isn't a standard operating system, making the programmers work more for developing solutions to integrate the chipsets with the software.
Users are looking forward to the new 3D graphics that will be implemented and its benefits like intuitive menus and applications and overall better looking interface.