Worldwide cellphone market expected to decline in 2009 despite smartphone growth

Worldwide cellphone market expected to decline in 2009 despite smartphone growth
It was another tough three months for the cellphone industry during this year's second quarter. According to IDC's Worldwide Quarterly Mobile Phone Tracker,  269.6 million handsets were shipped in the April through June period, down 10.8% from last year's 302.2 million units shipped. Still, the 269.6 million units represent a 17.2% increase from this year's first quarter. For the whole year, IDC sees worldwide sales off 13% from last year although small signs of improvement are expected from those manufacturers selling high-end smartphones.

Smartphone sales have bucked the trend this year. "Among the big handset vendors, Nokia, Samsung, Research In Motion, and Apple, all beat expectations for smartphones within the second quarter," said Ryan Reith, senior research analyst with IDC. Ryan goes on to add that a smartphone price war has broken out among the carriers and cellphone manufacturers offering the most expensive models. The analyst sees competitive pricing in the smartphone sector for upcoming quarters.

In the second quarter, Nokia remained the worldwide leader in overall market share despite a 15% drop from 40.4% of the market in 2008 to a 38.3% share in 2009. Samsung remained number two while its' market share rose from 15.2% to 19.4%. LG, Motorola and Sony Ericsson rounded out the top five with market shares of 11.1%, 5.5% and 5.1% respectively.

source: IDC

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