Luke Lin, DIGITIMES Research, Taipei [Monday 19 November 2012]
Global smartphone shipments are expected to grow 30% to 865 million units in 2013, accounting for 43.9% of total handset shipments in the year, Digitimes Research has estimated.
Factors including relationships between platform providers and hardware makers, support from telecom carriers for new models, and key developments or decisions by some vendors will affect smartphone sales in 2013, Digitimes Research believes.
Google is expected to further strengthen its control over the Android ecosystem and its production partners, which may limit the development of other platforms or variant Android models.
Microsoft's launch of own-brand smartphones may result in a reduction in support for the Window Phone platform by hardware vendors, which should otherwise serve as a key factor to push for the growth of the Window Phone to become a third major platform in the segment.
While Amazon is likely to enter the smartphone market, 2013 may be crucial a year for Nokia and RIM (Research in Motion) to make vital decisions concerning their smartphone businesses.
Demand for high-end smartphone models in Western Europe will be affected seriously by reduced government budgets and weak consumption in the region because of the prolonged financial crisis.
However, smartphones' growing penetration in China, Russia, India, Indonesia, South America and other emerging markets will serve as a growth driver for global smartphone shipments in 2013, Digitimes Research believes.