PDA Sales Pounding The Pavement

    August 3, 2005

PDA sales worldwide took off up the road, up 32% from the same period last year. Gartner said 3.6 million units sold from all vendors. Research In Motion’s Blackberry units continue to climb above the others though taking 23% of the market share.

Blackberry accounted for 840,000 of those total units boosted by a strong European market. According to the report, PDA sales had dropped off significantly but that the market had turned around quite well. The report also said the PDA market is on track for a record year, anticipating 15 million units sold, passing the 2001 record of 13.2 million.

Gartner analyst Todd Kort said, “Wireless PDAs are increasingly seen as an adjunct or alternative to notebook computers, while favorable exchange rates have enabled more Europeans to purchase PDAs at an attractive price.”

Another point worth noticing is the break down of operating systems. Windows CE was the top dog overall with just over 1.6 million. RIM had 840,000, Palm’s OS came in 678,570 and while Linux had just 28,000, expect that number to climb as PalmSource transitions to Linux and Nokia’s 770 unit will be a Linux based PDA.

After Blackberry, Palm stayed a solid second with 17.8% of the market. Dell dropped out of the top 5 rankings as T-Mobile’s Sidekick II and Pocket PC Phone Edition moved in to chew up some of the market. HP also saw a drop.

Western Europe saw the highest growth of 94% to 1.3 million units, 37% of worldwide sales, up from 25% during the same period last year. The U.S. saw health sales too of 1.4 million units, a little over a percentage point from 2004. Gartner put most of the blame on manufacturers in the U.S. for aging product lines. HP and Dell both plan to begin upgrading their offerings soon.

John Stith is a staff writer for WebProNews covering technology and business.