Smartphones expected to dominate mobile phone market by 2013 – report

29 Aug 2012

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The IHS iSuppli Wireless Communications Market Tracker Report predicts that smartphones will become the biggest player in the mobile phone market as early as next year – two years ahead of previous predictions.

The report forecasts that smartphones – which currently hold 46pc of the global market this year and had a 35pc share in 2011 – will account for 54pc of the worldwide mobile phone shipments in 2013.

“This represents a major upgrade for the outlook compared to a year ago, when smartphones weren’t expected to take the lead until 2015,” said Wayne Lam, senior analyst for wireless communications at IHS.

Feature phones, which held 46pc of the market last year, are expected to drop to a 41pc share in 2012, a decline that is expected to continue.

IHS iSuppli predicts that, by 2016, the market will be dominated by smartphones at 67.4pc, with feature phones taking less than half that at 28pc. Entry-level and low-cost handsets are also predicted to drop significantly from 14pc of the share this year to just 4.2pc by 2016.

IHS iSuppli Worldwide Market Share Forecast by Mobile Handset Type

“Over the past 12 months, smartphones have fallen in price, and a wider variety of models have become available, spurring sales of both low-end smartphones in regions like Asia-Pacific, as well as mid-range to high-end phones in the United States and Europe. The solid expansion in both shipments and market share this year of smartphones will make them the leading type of mobile phone for the first time, and shipment growth in the double digits will continue for the next few years,” said Lam.

Elaine Burke is managing editor of Siliconrepublic.com

editorial@siliconrepublic.com