IDC: Smartphone, Tablet Sales on the Rise, But Growth is Slowing in the U.S.

Tablet sales are increasing more quickly than PC or smartphone sales.


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Posted September 27, 2012

Cynthia Harvey

A new report from market research firm IDC indicates that worldwide sales of smart connected devices--a category that includes PCs, smartphones and tablets--is on the rise. Vendors shipped 267.3 million of these devices in the second quarter, a 27.4 percent year-over-year increase.

The Economic Times observed, "On a revenue basis, the total was $131.5 billion worldwide, up 16 per cent from a year ago but down 2.7 per cent from the past quarter."

However, the picture in the U.S. isn't quite as rosy as the global outlook. "In the United States, not just PCs but the entire smart connected device market is slowing down. During the second quarter, revenues for the combined categories fell 8.6 percent annually. IDC pointed to both macroeconomic conditions and a 'degree of saturation' beginning to impact the market," eWeek reported.

The research firm expects global smartphone and tablet sales to continue to rise over the next four years. "Smartphones in particular, now accounting for 59% of connected device shipments, will grow 15.8% annually, to reach nearly 63% of shipments by 2016. Tablets will grow the fastest, though, rising from a 10% share in 2012 to 13% by 2016, eating into PC share, which will drop from 31% to 24% during the same time," wrote TechCrunch's Sara Perez.

"The recent shipment data clearly demonstrates that we have fully entered into the multi-device era, where individuals are buying and using multiple devices per person, most often with different combinations of operating systems. The implications of this development on application developers, device makers, Web service providers, businesses, and even individuals is profound," IDC's Bob O'Donnell stated in a press release.

Tags: PC, research, smartphone, tablet, IDC, report

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