China To Surpass U.S. as the Biggest Market for Smartphones

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Research performed by IDC shows that China will become the leading country-level market for smartphone shipments in 2012, moving ahead of the current leader, the United States.

China has been surpassing the United States in smartphone shipments for the past two quarters, and numbers show that China will carry that momentum into 2012 and into the future. Android smartphones priced below $200 were the most popular devices in 2011 and these low-cost handsets are expected to play a major role for smartphone growth, with prices becoming more affordable thanks to increased competition.

Vendors in China such as Huawai, ZTE, and Lenovo rack up big carrier orders due to their willingness to produce customized devices. China’s increase in smartphone shipments can be because of these local companies as well as international ones such as Samsung and Nokia.

Two additional emerging markets, India and Brazil, are expected to be one of the top 5 country markets for smartphones in 2016.

“Due to their sheer size, strong demand, and healthy replacement rates, emerging markets are quickly becoming the engines of the worldwide smartphone market,” said Ramon Llamas, senior research analyst with IDC’s Mobile Phone Technology and Trends team.

Smartphone Market Share

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