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Mobile Market Fails To Grow – But 4G An Emerging-World Hit

Mobile Market Fails To Grow – But 4G An Emerging-World Hit

As CN well knows, there are two sides to every story, especially when it comes to statistics, so it’s no surprise that the latest figures from industry analyst IDC are being interpreted liberally.

The IDC figures reveal global smartphone growth in this year ground to a near-halt, with shipments in the US rising only one percent, compared to 10.4 percent in 2015. Total worldwide shipments of smartphones are expected to be 1.45 billion units, up just 0.6pc, and a sign the mobile-phone boom is in decline.

The US sales drop follows moves by wireless carriers to stop offering discounted smartphones to lure customers.

As a result US smartphone owners have become more aware of what a phone is worth and they aren’t switching as often.

On the other hand, emerging markets are fuelling a 21.3 percent growth in 4G smartphones. In shipments, that translates to 1.17 billion units, up from 967 million in 2015.

IDC estimates that Android smartphones account for 85 percent of the market while, at the other end, Windows phones account for only one percent. It’s frustrating news for Microsoft, which is still planning to launch its proposed Surface Phone line next year, despite shipments of mobiles using Microsoft software declining nearly 80 percent.

In the overall market, Samsung remains the leading maker with 72.5 million units for the year, followed by Apple with 45.5 million.

Huawei shipped around 33.6 million units, IDC says,  while Oppo and Vivo siblings scored 25.3 and 21.2 million. For the first time the combined shipments of Chinese phones, with a total of 46.5 million, eclipsed those of Apple. – Chris Castellari

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