Smartphone sales growing by 45 per cent in 2012, IDC says

Android will lead the way again; Windows Phone will be fastest growing mobile OS through 2016

Smartphone shipments to retailers worldwide this year are expected to total 717 million, 45% more than shipped in 2011, IDC said Tuesday.

The positive news for smartphones is countered by IDC's projection of just a small increase -- 1.4% over last year -- in sales of all types of mobile phones.

The worldwide mobile phone growth rate is the smallest recorded by IDC in three years. Shipments are projected to reach 1.7 billion globally in 2012, IDC said.

IDC projects record-breaking fourth quarter smartphone shipments -- the high volume holiday season -- of 224.5 million smartphones, a 39.5% increase over 2011.

The strong fourth quarter is led by sales of iPhone 5 and Samsung Galaxy S 3 along with low-cost Android phones shipped to China and other markets, IDC said.

For all of 2012, Android is projected to hold 68.3% of the global smartphone market, followed by iPhone at 18.8%, BlackBerry at 4.75% and Windows Phone at 2.6%, IDC said.

Android shows the biggest market growth in 2012, up from a 49% share in 2011. The iPhone's share is the same as in 2011 (18.8%) , while BlackBerry has declined from more than 10% in 2011 to 4.75% in 2012.

IDC said it expects Windows Phone to be the fastest growing smartphone OS over the next four years, increasing its share from 2.6% in 2012 to 11.4% in 2016.

Windows Phone will battle BlackBerry for third spot on the list in 2013, IDC expects.

Windows Phone 8 will contribute to the bottom lines of Nokia and HTC, as well as Samsung, ZTE and Huawei, IDC said.

By 2016, BlackBerry will have dropped back somewhat to a 4.1% market share, while iPhone is expected to remain remain fairly consistent to end the year with a 19.1% share. Android's share is expected to drop a bit to 63.8%, IDC said.

Even with a lowered share, Android will still see an 18% annual growth rate through 2016, because the number of smartphones sold will grow by 18% a year through 2016, reaching about1.4 billion smartphones shipped that year, IDC said.

Samsung is the top seller of Android smartphones. Android also boosted LG Electronics and Sony into the list of top five smartphone vendors in the third quarter.

Matt Hamblen covers mobile and wireless, smartphones and other handhelds, and wireless networking for Computerworld. Follow Matt on Twitter at @matthamblen, or subscribe to Matt's RSS feed . His e-mail address is mhamblen@computerworld.com.

Read more about mobile/wireless in Computerworld's Mobile/Wireless Topic Center.

Join the newsletter!

Or

Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.

Tags mobilesmartphoneswirelessNetworkingoperating systemssoftwareIDCconsumer electronicsMobile/Wireless

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Matt Hamblen

Computerworld (US)
Show Comments

Essentials

James Cook University - Master of Data Science Online Course

Learn more >

Mobile

Exec

Budget

Back To Business Guide

Click for more ›

Brand Post

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Christopher Low

Brother RJ-4230B

This small mobile printer is exactly what I need for invoicing and other jobs such as sending fellow tradesman details or step-by-step instructions that I can easily print off from my phone or the Web.

Aysha Strobbe

Microsoft Office 365/HP Spectre x360

Microsoft Office continues to make a student’s life that little bit easier by offering reliable, easy to use, time-saving functionality, while continuing to develop new features that further enhance what is already a formidable collection of applications

Michael Hargreaves

Microsoft Office 365/Dell XPS 15 2-in-1

I’d recommend a Dell XPS 15 2-in-1 and the new Windows 10 to anyone who needs to get serious work done (before you kick back on your couch with your favourite Netflix show.)

Maryellen Rose George

Brother PT-P750W

It’s useful for office tasks as well as pragmatic labelling of equipment and storage – just don’t get too excited and label everything in sight!

Cathy Giles

Brother MFC-L8900CDW

The Brother MFC-L8900CDW is an absolute stand out. I struggle to fault it.

Luke Hill

MSI GT75 TITAN

I need power and lots of it. As a Front End Web developer anything less just won’t cut it which is why the MSI GT75 is an outstanding laptop for me. It’s a sleek and futuristic looking, high quality, beast that has a touch of sci-fi flare about it.

Featured Content

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?