28 May Gartner: Worldwide mobile phone sales increase 14% in Q1
Worldwide sales of mobile phones grew by 13 percent in the first quarter of 2008, reaching 294.3 million units in the three-month period that ended March 31, according to Gartner, Inc.
The increase largely was driven by robust sales in emerging markets in Latin America, up 28.4 percent; Asia, up 26.6 percent; and the Eastern Europe, Middle East, and Africa region, up 25.8 percent.
These numbers more than made up for comparatively lackluster sales in mature markets like North America, where sales totaled 41.9 million, an increase of just 2.4 percent, and Western Europe, which experienced a sharp decline of 16.4 percent. It was the first drop in Western Europe since Gartner, an information technology research and advisory company, began tracking mobile device sales in 2001.
Carolina Milanesi, research director for mobile devices at Gartner, said in a release that mobile phone sales in emerging markets continue to be driven by strong net new subscriber growth. Meanwhile, she said mature markets “felt the pressure of an uncertain economic environment.”
“Sales of high-end devices in particular were lower as consumers turned to mid-tier devices when looking to upgrade their old phones,” Milanesi explained in the release. “Phone manufacturers should strengthen their mid-tier offerings in order to cater to those users that might be reticent to invest too much money in replacing their old phones when the economic environment remains challenging.”
Among providers, Nokia remained a dominant number one despite seeing its market share dip slightly in Q1. According to Gartner, Nokia sold 115.2 million mobile phones in the quarter as its market share slipped slightly to 39.1 percent, followed by: Samsung, 42.4 million (14.4 percent market share); Motorola, 29.9 million (10.2 percent); LG, 23.6 million (eight percent); Sony Ericksson, 22.1 million (7.5 percent); and others, 61.1 million (20.8 percent).
More information is available in the Gartner report “Dataquest Insight: Market Share for Mobile Devices, 1Q08.”
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