For the first time, smartphone shipments have crossed feature phone shipments, claims IDC in its quarterly mobile tracker report. According to IDC, overall 418.6 million mobile phones were shipped in Q1, 2013, showing a modest growth of 4pc year over year. Out of the total mobile phone shipments, 216.2 million units were smartphones, which were 51.6pc of the total shipments.
“Phone users want computers in their pockets. The days where phones are used primarily to make phone calls and send text messages are quickly fading away,” said Kevin Restivo, senior research analyst with IDC’s Worldwide Quarterly Mobile Phone Tracker. “As a result, the balance of smartphone power has shifted to phone makers that are most dependent on smartphones.”
The smartphone market grew 41.6pc year over year, but it decreased 5.1pc quarter on quarter basis showing the seasonal slowness in the market as the consumers waited for next-gen smartphones.
“In addition to smartphones displacing feature phones, the other major trend in the industry is the emergence of Chinese companies among the leading smartphone vendors,” noted Ramon Llamas, research manager with IDC’s Mobile Phone team. “A year ago, it was common to see previous market leaders Nokia, BlackBerry (then Research In Motion), and HTC among the top five. While those companies have been in various stages of transformation since, Chinese vendors, including Huawei and ZTE as well as Coolpad and Lenovo, have made significant strides to capture new users with their respective Android smartphones.”
In terms of the specific companies, Samsung continued to remain on top, by shipping over 70 million smartphone units, followed by Apple, ZTE, Huawei and LG.