Smartphones will outsell feature phones in 2013, for the first time ever

This year may be a very important one. It may just be the year in which global smartphone sales will be more than feature phone sales. At least that’s what well known analyst house IDC thinks. The smartphone market share should be 50.1% of the total pie of phone sales worldwide.

That’s only barely past the 50% mark, which means it’s still not a certainty that this will happen. After all, we have four big analyst houses and their yearly sales numbers always vary a bit, so even if IDC announces that smartphones went over the threshold, others may not agree.

IDC smartphone sales 2013 by country

But that’s not really important. Even if this doesn’t happen this year, it will happen in 2014. It’s simply inevitable. We’ve been watching smartphone sales grow at an incredible pace over the past few years, and they show no signs of stopping. Smartphone sales grow more than feature phone sales, so it’s easy to imagine a future where every phone is a smart phone. That’s still way off, but as smartphones get cheaper and cheaper, it’s within the realm of possible now.

China will remain the world’s biggest smartphone market in 2013, followed by the US, UK, Japan, Brazil, and India. So obviously further smartphone sales growth has to come from ‘emerging markets’ such as China, Brazil, and India, since demand in the developed nations is slowing down. By 2017, IDC forecasts that India and Brazil will occupy the third and fourth places, respectively, in the ‘biggest smartphone markets’ chart.

Author: Vlad Bobleanta

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