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IDC: 1 Billion Smart Connected Devices Shipped In 2012

FRAMINGHAM, MASS. – More than 1 billion smart connected devices shipped worldwide in 2012, a 29.1 percent increase, according to IDC’s “Smart Connected Device Tracker” report.

The category, which encompasses desktop PCs, notebooks, tablets and smartphones, will continue its hockey-stick-growth curve, with shipments hitting 2.2 billion by 2017. This is expected to generate about $814 billion in revenue, up from $576.9 billion in 2012.

Tablets were the primary driver behind the increase, enjoying a 78.4 percent year-over-year growth in shipments. IDC forecasts a continuation of this trend, with 2013 year-over-year shipments growing 48.7 percent, equating to 190 million units shipping worldwide.

IDC expects this increase to lead to tablets surpassing desktop PC shipments in 2013 and laptops the following year. Desktop PC and laptops will not help their own cause during this period; IDC expects desktop shipments will fall 4.3 percent in 2013, while portable computer growth will remain at just less than 1 percent.

The smartphone market is showing no sign of slowing: IDC predicted a 27.2 percent increase this year, to 918.5 million units.

The fourth quarter was particularly bright, with almost 378 million devices shipped and revenues topping $168 billion worldwide. Samsung continued to be the market leader, but Apple did close the gap. The iPhone 5 and iPad Mini helped boost the company’s share to 20.3 percent, compared with Samsung’s 21.2 percent. Apple did handily beat Samsung on a revenue basis, with a 30.7 percent share, about 10 points higher than Samsung.