IDC forecasts 0.6% growth in smartphone shipments, full year of decline for Apple

IDC forecasts 0.6% growth in smartphone shipments, full year of decline for Apple
According to IDC's latest data, worldwide smartphone shipments are expected to reach 1.45 billion units with a year-over-year growth rate of 0.6% in 2016 – down significantly from the 10.4% growth they experienced last year. Still, sales of 4G smartphones have grown 21.3% year-over-year globally, with much of the growth coming from emerging markets.

IDC also notes that shipments of Google Pixel and Pixel XL are not at a point where Samsung and Apple should feel a significant impact during the fourth quarter. It compares Google's entry in the hardware business to that of Microsoft and its Surface line, saying it's too early to tell if relations with hardware manufacturing partners will be negatively impacted by it.

2016 will be the first full year of declining iPhone shipments, with a projected four quarters of year-over-year declines resulting in negative growth. Apple is challenged by low-cost competition at one side, and Google's entry into the premium space from the other. However, 2017 could see a return to growth if Apple manages to surprise audiences with its 10-year anniversary iPhone lineup.

Lastly, IDC projects a 79.1% decline in Windows Phone shipments, due to the diminishing number of manufacturers supporting the platform. While the Microsoft Surface phone could be a reality, Windows Phone's bare app ecosystem is still an obstacle for growth.

source: IDC

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