Smartphones taking over faster than expected

Michael Carroll
30 Aug 2012

Research firm IHS is cutting two years from its forecasts on when smartphones will become the dominant mobile devices in terms of unit shipments.

The firm now expects smartphones to become the most-shipped form factor in 2013, when it predicts the devices will account for 54% of total global handset shipments compared to 46% in 2012.

Wayne Lam, senior analyst for wireless communications at the firm, says the revised outlook is a major upgrade to IHS’ forecasts that smartphones would account for over 50% of sales by 2015. He explains declining smartphone prices in the past year and growth in the variety of models available has spurred “sales of both low-end smartphones in regions like Asia Pacific, as well as midrange to high-end phones in the United States and Europe.”

The firm forecasts double-digit growth in smartphone shipments will continue, driving the form factor’s share of overall sales to 67.4% by 2016.

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