2013 will be the year that global smartphone shipments finally top feature phones, according to new figured from NPD.
According to the research firm, global smartphone shipments will hit 937 million units this year. That will just outpace global feature phone shipments - which will top out at 889 million. Looking forward, NPD says that global smartphone shipments will break 1.4 billion by 2016. That's an annual growth rate of 26%, starting back in 2011.
”The global smartphone market is expected to continue growing rapidly over the next two years,” said Shawn Lee, research director at NPD DisplaySearch. “With larger, higher-resolution displays, faster processors, and higher-capacity cellular systems being built, the smartphone is not only becoming a must-have device, but is satisfying many needs that formerly required other computing and consumer electronics devices.”
Here are the projections:
NPD points to emerging markets, like China for instance, for the growth in smartphone shipments. In fact, China accounts for 55% of entry-level smartphone shipments. The whole Asia-Pacific region will account for half of all global smartphone shipments in 2013.
The availability of cheaper ($200 or less) smartphones, plus the spread of 3G and 4G data has led to this increase in smartphone shipments.
“To increase revenue share and gain margin in the smartphone market, a variety of new handsets, as well as new products launched by service and content providers, will enter the market,” Lee said. “As smartphone specifications and features become more advanced, and as device replacement rates increase, we can expect further investment in the industry by manufacturers, carriers, and governments.”
This news leaves Newt Gingrich absolutely perplexed.