By Lisa Johnston
New products on display at the American International Toy Fair, held in N
The smartphone category almost doubled its share of U.S. handset sales to consumers in the fourth quarter of 2008 compared with the year-ago quarter, in large part because smartphone pricing fell 23 percent, a survey by The NPD Group found.
The results of the consumer survey exclude sales to the enterprise market.
Smartphones represented 23 percent of all handsets sold to consumers in the fourth quarter, up from 12 percent in 2007's fourth quarter. Handset share grew as smartphone prices fell 23 percent to an average $167 in the fourth quarter, compared with the year-ago average of $216. The decline reflects competitive price pressures on smartphones with the launch of the AT&T-subsidized iPhone 3G at $199, down substantially from its unsubsidized predecessor.
“AT&T and the iPhone began the trend of the signature touchscreen smartphone,” said Ross Rubin, industry analysis director. “The arrival of the BlackBerry Storm on Verizon Wireless, the T-Mobile G1 and imminently the Palm Pre from Sprint completes the new competitive dynamic.”
The survey also found that smartphone buyers buy more accessories than buyers of other phones. More than half, or 52 percent, of smartphone buyers purchased an accessory at the time of their phone purchases, while only 41 percent of other buyers did so.
NPD also pointed out that although half of the smartphones on the market feature touchscreens, 70 percent of all models offer QWERTY keyboards. The research company also says 66 percent of smartphones available use 3G networks, up from the year-ago 46 percent.NPD Market Magnifier: Top 32-inch LCD TV Markets Markets
|2. Los Angeles||27.8|
|3. New York||27.7|
|4. Las Vegas||27.1|
|NPD market-level information enables subscribers to identify the strongest markets and opportunities for improving business.|
Data is collected from individual retail locations of a panel of 70 industry-leading retailers for consumer electronics, information technology, mobile audio and imaging.
The aggregation of individual stores provides significant coverage for making confident and insightful decisions.
This TWICE webinar, hosted by senior editor Alan Wolf, will take a look at what may be the hottest CE products at retail that will be sold during the all-important fourth quarter. Top technologies, market strategies and industry trends will be discussed with industry analysts and executives.