Global Phones, PDA & Tablet Industry Analysis
Smartphones and tables are both part of the portable devices industry.
The global smartphone market recorded close to 67% growth in 2011, reaching sales of 470 million units, up from 282 million units in 2010 according to research from Transparency Market Research. Asia-Pacific accounts for close to 40% of the market. Three quarters of smartphone individual subscribers use the device for private and professional purposes.
The global tablet market reached sales to end users of 27 million units in 2011, according to Transparency Market Research. Asia-Pacific is predicted to record the highest rate of global shipments of tablets, exceeding 36%.
Tablet sales to end user rose almost 277% in 2011, up from under 18 million units in 2010. Market growth was fuelled by the popularity of Amazon’s Kindle Fire tablet, Samsung’s Galaxy and Galaxy 2 tablets, and Apple’s iPad 2 tablet. Amazon’s Kindle Fire tablet sold 3.5 million units in the last 45 days of 2011, following its launch in November. The installed base of tablet devices exceeded 81 million units in 2011.
Mobile Phone Connectivity and Charging Market
Worldwide handset shipments rose 15% in 2011 to around 1.5 billion units, reports Berg Insight. Mobile operators are readily subsidizing these phones to boost postpaid subscriptions. Smartphone penetration is fuelling growth for wireless connectivity technologies like GPS, WLAN, NFC and Bluetooth. The latter allows headset connectivity, file transfers and medical sensors, while WLAN allows internet access, fast media and file transfer, and VoIP services.
The global Near Field Communication (NFC)-based mobile handset market is expected to record yearly growth of almost 69% between 2011 and 2016, according to research from GBI Research. NFC-based mobile handsets are used as virtual identity cards for downloading data and peer-to-peer communication. SIM-based and embedded models are forecast to account for the highest market share over the next coming years.
The worldwide wireless charging sector is forecast to exceed $7 billion in 2017, up from under $457 million in 2011, reports Markets and Markets. This represents yearly growth of more than 57% between 2012 and 2017. Japan dominates the wireless charging market, while the US is recording relatively slow growth as consumers gradually accept wireless charging technology. Due to its relative underdevelopment, this market holds various opportunities, including embedding wireless charging in commercial facilities such as airports, cinemas and cafes. Smartphones with embedded receivers means a sleeve is not required.