Smartphone market still growing as prices fall

May 28, 2014
A display of smartphones is seen in Las Vegas, Nevada, on January 7, 2014

Global smartphone sales will jump 23 percent this year to more than 1.2 billion units, fueled by growth of low-cost handsets in emerging markets, a research firm said Wednesday.

An IDC survey said smartphone sales will maintain an annual growth rate of 12.3 percent through 2018.

Much of the growth is coming from low-cost devices using the Android operating system, with Apple's eroding, Microsoft Windows making modest gains and BlackBerry fading further, IDC said.

"What makes smartphone growth so amazing is where the growth will be taking place," said Ramon Llamas, an IDC analyst.

"Smartphone shipments will more than double between now and 2018 within key emerging markets, including India, Indonesia and Russia. In addition, China will account for nearly a third of all shipments in 2018."

IDC said it expects the average selling price of smartphones to drop this year to $314 from $335 in 2013, and to keep declining to $267 by 2018.

The research firm said it expects Android to remain ahead of the pack with an 80.4 percent market share in 2014, and to lose a modest amount of ground to Windows over the coming years.

Apple's iOS market share is forecast to drop from 14.8 percent in 2014 to 13.7 percent in 2018, suggesting growth in some markets, despite Apple's lack of low-cost units.

IDC said Windows Phone is slowly gaining traction and that its market share will rise from 3.5 percent this year to 6.4 percent by 2018.

The report said BlackBerry's market share will be less than one percent this year—0.8 percent, and keep dropping to 0.3 percent in 2018.

"The question of whether BlackBerry can survive continues to surface," the IDC report said. "The only way the company will be viable is likely through a niche approach based on its security assets."

Explore further: Prices under pressure as global smartphone sales slow

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Samsung on top in growing smartphone market

Apr 30, 2014

South Korea's Samsung remained at the top of the rapidly growing smartphone market in early 2014 as Chinese rivals gained ground, a survey showed Wednesday.

Android smartphones dominate, Windows gains

Nov 12, 2013

Google's Android platform was used on four out of five smartphones sold worldwide in the third quarter, while Microsoft's Windows Phone showed strong gains, said a survey out Tuesday.

Recommended for you

NBCUniversal settles with unpaid interns for $6.4M

4 hours ago

NBCUniversal will pay $6.4 million to settle a class action lawsuit brought by unpaid interns who worked on "Saturday Night Live" and other shows who claim they are owed wages, according to court documents.

States ascend into the cloud

5 hours ago

Seven years ago, the state of Delaware started moving computer servers out of closets and from under workers' desks to create a consolidated data center and a virtual computing climate.

Microsoft drops Nokia name from smartphones

7 hours ago

Microsoft said Friday it was dropping the Nokia name from its Lumia smartphones, rebranding following the acquisition earlier this year of the Finnish group's handset division.

Amazon's loss makes holidays a question mark

7 hours ago

Amazon's trademark smile icon is becoming more of a grimace. The world's largest online retailer reported a wider third-quarter loss than analysts expected and gave a disappointing holiday forecast.

Ericsson profit down 10 pct despite higher sales

11 hours ago

Wireless equipment maker Ericsson says its third-quarter earnings slumped 10 percent despite higher sales due to increased operating costs and negative effects from currency hedging.

User comments : 1

Adjust slider to filter visible comments by rank

Display comments: newest first

Sean_W
not rated yet May 29, 2014
Anyone who can come up with a way for poor people to earn even small amounts of money by providing some kind of service over smart phones is going to change the geopolitics of the planet. Maybe some kind of measurement that they or the phone itself could perform could be compiled into information with enough value to someone that they could stream micro-payments to participants.