Smartphones, Tablets To Maintain Double-Digit Gains In Shipments

By Joseph Palenchar On Feb 28 2012 - 8:00pm

NEW YORK – Growth rates in global smartphone and tablet shipments will slow in 2012 and 2013 but will nonetheless post strong double-digit gains, with the two top smartphone suppliers — Apple and Samsung — gaining smartphone share but with Apple losing tablet share, Canaccord Genuity forecasts.

The market research and investmentbanking company projects smartphone unit shipments will rise in 2012 by 38.5 percent to 675 million and by 34.5 percent in 2013 to 907.6 million following 2011’s 64.3 percent gain and 2010’s 72.1 percent gain.

Because of declining feature-phone shipments, however, global shipments of all cellphones will rise only 3.4 percent in 2011 and 2012 following 2011’s 11.9 percent gain to 1.61 billion.

In the tablet market, Canaccord Genuity forecast 2012 global unit shipment growth of 75.2 percent to 112.5 million following 2011 growth of 255 percent to 64.2 million. In 2013, percentage growth will slow again to 47.8 percent to bring shipments to 166.3 million.

In tablets, Apple lost share in 2011 and will continue to do so in 2012 and 2013 while remaining the market leader, Canaccord said. Both Apple and Samsung lost tablet share to Amazon’s Kindle Fire in 2011, when Amazon took the No. 2 spot in worldwide tablet share at 9.3 percent. Amazon will stay in second place in 2012 with a forecast 15.8 percent share. Samsung will also gain slight share in 2012 but will remain in third place, Canaccord said.

Despite Amazon’s gain, Canaccord contended that Amazon’s Kindle “did not adversely impact iPad sales but more likely had a greater impact on e-reader sales.”

In smartphones, the No. 1 and 2 suppliers – Samsung and Apple, in that order – will both gain unit share in 2012, with Samsung remaining on top in 2012 with 26.3 percent share compared to Apple’s 22 percent, Canaccord said. Everyone else but Sony, Huawei and ZTE will lose share, and the shares of those three suppliers will remain in the low single digits.

“OEMs such as Huawei and ZTE have taken advantage of growing smartphone sales in emerging markets,” the company noted. The two companies have also targeted the U.S. for smartphone growth.

In the short term, Canaccord said it expects high-end smartphones launched at the Mobile World Congress from Feb. 27 to March 1 will not ship until the second quarter because “many OEMs are delaying launches of high-end smartphone products rather than compete with the record-setting iPhone 4S.” The time frame will be before consumers become aware of a potential iPhone 5 launch in mid-2012, Canaccord added.

Among smartphone operating systems, Android will remain the dominant OS in 2012 and 2013, capturing 56.8 percent smartphone-shipment share in 2012 and 57.4 percent in 2013, the company said. Apple’s iOS will continue to gain share, but only slightly, with Apple share rising from 19.1 percent in 2011 to 22 percent in 2012 and 22.6 percent in 2013. Windows Mobile Phone will also gain share, having risen 4.7 percent in 2011 and forecast to rise to 9.4 percent in 2012 and 12.8 percent in 2013. RIM’s share fell in 2011 and will continue to do so in 2012 and 2013.

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