Smartphones over 80% of mobile phone shipments by 2017

Samsung-vs-Apple-150x150Global smartphone shipments are forecast to reach 1.8 billion in 2017, accounting for 82 per cent of total mobile phone handset shipments, up from 55 per cent in Q3 2013.

According to the latest NPD DisplaySearch, the compound annual growth rate (CAGR) for smartphones over the next five years will reach 21 per cent, while feature phones will decline at a CAGR of 16 per cent.

The majority of smartphone growth will come from the Asia-Pacific region, especially China. China is forecast to grow 63 per cent in 2013, and is expected to comprise 30 per cent of the smartphone market by 2017. “Smartphone market growth is being fueled by entry-level smartphones from international brands and white-box vendors in emerging markets,” said Tina Teng, senior analyst for smartphones at NPD DisplaySearch. “We expect aggressive pricing moves to continue, prompting first-time smartphone buyers to upgrade earlier.”

The most popular screen sizes through 2017 are expected to be 4″ to 4.9″ displays, although screens larger than 5″ will account for more than one third (38 per cent) of total smartphone shipments. While full-HD displays just became available last year, they are forecast to become the dominant resolution for smartphones, reaching a 43 per cent share of the market by 2017. Meanwhile, quad-HD displays will become available in 2014 and are expected to grab 16 per cent of smartphone shipments by 2017.

As worldwide network speeds increase, 4G smartphones will continue to penetrate more of the market, reaching 41 per cent of smartphone shipments in 2017. However, due to its economies of scale, 3G high-speed packet access (HSPA) will continue to be the dominant air-interface technology, comprising 51 per cent of the market in 2017.

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