According to Strategy Analytics, in a report out today, the global user base of smartphones has surpassed one billion, at the end of the third quarter of 2012.
The report states that 1.038 billion smartphones are now in use, up from 959 million at the end of the second quarter and close to 300 million more than the 708 million counted at the end of the third quarter last year.
Neil Mawston, director of Strategy Analytics’ Global Wireless Practice, noted the world’s “first modern smartphone,” the Nokia Communicator, was introduced in 1996, helping Nokia to remain a dominant force in the smartphone market until the iPhone’s 2007 arrival.
Worldwide annual unit shipments of Android phones will rise to 451 million in 2013, up from 357 million in 2012, according to an IHS iSuppli. Of those 1 billion-plus phones, Apple and Google smartphones will amount to a formidable 76 percent of the market in 2012. While Google has taken the advertising-revenue-supported model, Apple makes its money by controlling both the hardware and software portions of the design.
The remaining portion split among Microsoft’s Windows Phone, Nokia’s Symbian, Research In Motion’s BlackBerry, and other platforms such as Samsung’s Bada and Linux.
IDC has forecast that in 2012, smartphone shipments to China will outpace those to the United States, with a nearly 27 percent share going to China and 18 percent to the United States.
The International Telecommunications Union this month announced there are now 6 billion cellphone subscriptions, world-wide. Fully a third of those, for a total of two billion, are from China and India. The stats don’t necessarily mean that 6 billion people have mobile devices. Many people have multiple devices with a mobile broadband connection – a smartphone and tablet, for example.
CTIA, the industry group for all wireless providers in America, also reported this month that there are now more mobile phone subscriptions (322 million) than there are Americans (314 million). Of that total, 41 percent are smartphones, and 23 percent are prepaid customers.
IDC expects a relatively dramatic shift between 2011 and 2016, with the once-dominant Windows on x86 platform, slipping from a leading 35.9% share in 2011 down to 25.1% in 2016.
The number of Android-based devices running on ARM CPUs, on the other hand, will grow modestly from 29.4% share in 2011 to a market-leading 31.1% share in 2016. Meanwhile, iOS-based devices will grow from 14.6% share in 2011 to 17.3% in 2016. By 2016, IDC predicts shipments will reach 1.84 billion units, more than double the 2011 figure.
Global Broadband Subscribers Set to Rise by Nearly 60 Percent by 2015, says iSuppli, with about 350 million new consumers projected to come online from 2011 to 2015.
4G Americas predicts there will be 604 million LTE subscribers globally by 2016, with some 3.5 billion using HSPA. That totals more than 4 billion broadband users by 2016.
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