APAC led in mobile phone sales in Q1 2013, says Gartner

by CXOtoday News Desk    May 14, 2013

mobile phones

Worldwide mobile phone sales increased slightly in the first quarter of 2013, as strong growth in the Asia-Pacific region paid off for a slowdown in other parts of the globe, according to research firm Gartner.

The report revealed globally, mobile phone sales totaled 426 million units in the first quarter of 2013, which is a nominal increase of 0.7 per cent from the same period in 2012. The sales of smartphones reached 210 million units in the first quarter of 2013, nearly 43 per cent increase from the first quarter last year. In the first quarter of 2013, smartphones accounted for 49.3 percent of sales of mobile phones worldwide. This is up from 34.8 per cent in the first quarter of 2012, and 44 per cent in the fourth quarter of 2012. On the other hand, sales of feature phones contracted 21.8 percent in the first quarter of 2013.

“Feature phones users across the world are either finding their existing phones good enough or are waiting for smartphones prices to drop further, either way the prospect of longer replacement cycles is certainly not good news for both vendors and carriers looking to move users forward,” said Anshul Gupta, Principal Research Analyst, Gartner.

Feature phones users across the world are either finding their existing phones good enough or are waiting for smartphones prices to drop further.
-Principal Research Analyst, Gartner

As far as region is concerned, only APAC excluding Japan showed growth in mobile phone sales this quarter, with a 6.4 per cent year-on-year increase. Mobile phone sales in the EMEA region dipped at 3.6 per cent. In the North and South America, mobile phone market declined 9.5 per cent and 3.8 per cent respectively, while Japan saw its mobile phone sales dropping at 7.3 per cent.Samsung remained in the top position, growing at 13 per cent in the first quarter of 2013. 

“We expect the new Galaxy S4 to be very popular despite being more of an evolution than a truly revolutionary device compared to the S3,” said Gupta.

Nokia’s share dropped 4.9 percentage points in the first quarter of 2013 mainly due to a steep decline in feature phone sales. Its position in the smartphone market also declined subsequently in the first quarter of 2013. Apple’s mobile phone share increased from 7.8 per cent to 9 per cent.

In terms of operating system, Android remained the dominant smartphone OS. Its share of the smartphone operating system market rose to 74.4 per cent from 56.9 per cent last year.