Worldwide sales of mobile devices are expected to decline by nearly 0.7 percent this year and pick up again next year with nine percent growth, Gartner research group said Tuesday.
Gartner's forecast of an 0.67 percent decline in sales in 2009 compared with 2008 was better than its September forecast of a 3.7 percent drop in sales this year.
The Stamford, Connecticut-based Gartner said it expected smartphones to account for 14 percent of the total 1.214 billion mobile devices sold this year.
It said it expects smartphones to account for 38 percent of total units sold by 2013.
"Despite a projected return to growth in 2010, the times of 20 per cent growth are certainly over as mature markets are saturated and most growth will come from emerging markets," Gartner research director Carolina Milanesi said.
"Software, services and content will be much bigger drivers than hardware, pushing traditional mobile phone vendors to reinvent themselves to remain at the top of their game," she added.
Explore further: New iPhones deliver big profits for Apple (Update)