Wireless Device Strategies

First to market each quarter with the most accurate and detailed data on handset strategies. The industry’s most timely, consistent and accurate tracking of device vendor KPI metrics, as well as handset market sales and shipment forecasts.

January 5, 2015 14:40 nmawston

According to our WDS (Devices) service, global Bluetooth headset sales will grow 14% during the next five years. Mono headset volumes are slipping in developed regions, but there are continued signs of growth in some emerging markets like China. The stereo Bluetooth headset category is rising steadily -- but competition from corded headphones remained intense this year. Despite fierce rivalry and market fragmentation, Plantronics, Jabra, Samsung and Motorola are still the "big 4" Bluetooth headset vendors that dominated the global industry in 2014. Our extensive report -- available to clients here -- forecasts worldwide Bluetooth headset sales by region, for mono and stereo, in-box and after-market, from 2001 to 2020. It also contains global Bluetooth headset marketshare for the world's 7 largest vendors in 2005 to 2020. The report goes on to forecast global Bluetooth speakerphone sales by region and attach-rate from 2008 to 2020.

April 29, 2014 15:52 sbicheno

According to the latest research from our Wireless Device Strategies (WDS) research service, global mobile phone shipments grew 9 percent annually to reach 408 million units in the first quarter of 2014. Huawei was the star performer among the top five players, capturing 3 percent share and growing two times faster than the industry average.

Global mobile phone shipments grew 9 percent annually from 372.7 million units in Q1 2013 to 407.9 million in Q1 2014. Smartphones accounted for 7 in 10 of total mobile phone shipments during the quarter. The 9 percent growth rate of the overall mobile phone market is at its highest level since 2011, driven by healthier demand for 4G and 3G models across Asia, Africa and elsewhere.

Samsung grew 6 percent annually and shipped 113.0 million mobile phones worldwide, capturing 28 percent marketshare in Q1 2014. Samsung’s growth rate has slowed recently due to tougher competition from Chinese vendors, but Samsung maintains an impressive product portfolio and it is still shipping more mobile phones worldwide than Apple, LG and Nokia combined. Nokia shipped 47.0 million mobile phones worldwide for 12 percent share in Q1 2014. Nokia continues to face intense competition from Apple and dozens of Android vendors. New owner Microsoft will be looking to Nokia’s upgraded X phone portfolio to stabilize the downturn in the coming months.

Apple shipped 43.7 million iPhones worldwide in Q1 2014, up from 37.4 million a year earlier. Apple has closed the marketshare gap on Nokia to just one point, and Nokia will have to fight hard to stay ahead in the second half of this year. LG had a mixed quarter, capturing 4 percent share of the global mobile phone market. LG is performing well in Europe, but China and India remain major weak spots that the vendor still needs to address.

Other findings from the research include:

  • Huawei shipped 14.2 million mobile phones worldwide for 3 percent marketshare to remain the world’s fifth largest vendor in Q1 2014. The company’s annual growth rate is two times higher than the overall mobile phone industry average. Huawei’s 3G and 4G Android devices are proving relatively popular in Asia and North America;
  • A long tail of second-tier brands continues to build momentum beyond the established top five mobile phone brands. Key emerging challengers in mobile phones worldwide at the moment include TCL-Alcatel, Coolpad, Lenovo, Xiaomi and others. These are important players to monitor.

Global Mobile Phone Vendor Shipments and Market Share in Q1 2014

Global Mobile Phone Vendor Shipments (Millions of Units)

Q1 '13

Q1 '14

























Global Mobile Phone Vendor Marketshare  %

Q1 '13

Q1 '14

























Total Growth Year-over-Year %






Source: Strategy Analytics




The full report, Global Mobile Phone Shipments Reach 408 Million Units in Q1 2014, is published by the Strategy Analytics Wireless Device Strategies (WDS) service, details of which can be found here: http://tinyurl.com/ck93xsu.

November 21, 2013 00:16 lsui

Our Wireless Device Strategies (WDS) services recently published the report : Global Handset Distribution by Channle by Region. It forecast handset distribution flows by 7 channels for 6 major regions and 3 key countries from 2012 to 2017.

We forecast pure e-commerce retailers (e.g. Amazon, eBay, Jingdong etc.) to grow fastest from 2012 to 2017, increasing the global volume by +248% during the period. China led the pack with the higest pure e-commerce presence of 10% in 2014, way above the global average of 4%. We believe Jingdong and Taobao T-Mall are among the largest e-retailers in China. Improved broadband / mobile broadband coverage, competitve pricing position and marketing promotions, as well as enhanced online shopping experiences, are the key drivers behind the surging online players.

WDS clients: please click here to access the full report.

October 16, 2013 18:00 nmawston

An analyst from our Wireless Device Strategies (WDS) service, Neil Mawston, presented at the GSMA's NFC Mobile Money Summit (MMS) in New York, US, on Tues 15th and Weds 16th October, 2013.

The event was well attended from across the globe and slickly put together.

Our analysis from Day 1 (Tues) can be viewed here.

Three conclusions we drew from the presentations during Day 2 (Weds) include:

1. Plenty of operators had NFC wallets on show, like Turkcell of Turkey -- but few wallets were truly multi-carrier and multi-bank solutions. Scale is clearly still a challenge for the NFC industry;

2. Transportation is a killer app for NFC phones. For example, Vimpelcom, a carrier, desires to take a small commission on NFC subway tickets in Moscow, Russia;

3. As expected, Safaricom, with M-Pesa, in Kenya, was often held up as a poster-child for mobile money in emerging markets. It is simple, cheap and relatively secure. Roughly half the country's mobile subscribers use it.

That wraps it up from sunny New York,

Clients or journalists who require additional analysis on the NFC Summit or NFC market trends can contact us here.

October 15, 2013 20:00 nmawston

An analyst from our Wireless Device Strategies (WDS) service, Neil Mawston, presented at the GSMA's NFC Mobile Money Summit (MMS) in New York, US, on Tues 15th and Weds 16th October, 2013.

The event was well attended from across the globe and slickly put together.

Three important conclusions we drew from the presentations during Day 1 (Tues) include:

1. The GSMA indicates 74 countries worldwide offered mobile money programs commercially in Q3 2013. From Austria to Zimbabwe. It is a truly global movement;

2. International NFC roaming for most is a distant prospect. The NFC industry remains too fragmented. Mega profits for carriers from international NFC payments are years away;

3. SMS payments and QR codes are giving NFC phones a run for their money in some countries, like China. NFC is NOT the only game in town.

More to follow from Day 2 (Weds) tomorrow.

July 31, 2013 18:07 sbicheno

ISIS - the mobile wallet joint-venture from US mobile carriers AT&T, Verizon and T-Mobile - has announced its US rollout later this year. The venture is a long-awaited attempt to standardize the nascent mobile payments industry, currently fragmented by multiple, competing initiatives and standards.

While establishing consensus among the multiple stakeholders required to establish a viable mobile payments network is a significant undertaking, the timing of this launch likely owes as much to the spread of NFC-enabled handsets as anything. NFC (Near Field Communication) is a leading technology for enabling mobile device-based payments as it allows the exchange of data merely by touching or swiping a device over an NFC touch-point.

In the Global NFC Handset Sales Forecast by Region: 2004 to 2017 report, Strategy Analytics’ Wireless Device Strategies (WDS) service forecasts the proportion of NFC-enabled handsets sold in North America will more than triple in 2013, up from around a tenth in 2012, and will jump once more in 2014. NFC phones have reached a tipping-point, and now is the time to fully exploit their capabilities.

April 23, 2013 08:37 nmawston

Our Wireless Device Strategies (WDS) team is proud to attend Huawei's 10th Global Analyst Summit between Tuesday 23rd to Thursday 25th April, 2013. Around 500 analysts and journalists are attending the event at a hotel in Shenzhen, China, near Hong Kong. Just 20 people attended the first Summit a decade ago.

Huawei has been outlining its strategy for mobile devices, enterprises and networks in 2013 / 2014. These are three of our top findings from Day One (Tuesday):

1. Brand is king for Huawei. The Make It Possible (MIP) campaign, which aims to make the brand more emotive, is being ramped up across 30+ countries (e.g. UK);

2. Huawei Ascend W1, the vendor's first WP8 smartphone, was demoed. Its pricing is competitive, at circa US$120 wholesale worldwide in H1 2013. Usability is typical of a mid-range device -- good, but not great (e.g. mixed touchscreen responsiveness);

3. NFC will play an important role in Huawei's smartphone and tablet strategy for the next two years.

More analysis from Day Two to follow on Wednesday.

April 23, 2013 03:08 nmawston

According to our Wireless Device Strategies (WDS) service, NFC phones have reached a tipping point this year and global volumes will surge an impressive 138% in 2013. Most new LTE phones will launch with NFC in the future, led by key players such as Samsung, Blackberry, Sony, Android, GSMA, G&D and Visa. Paying, pairing and sharing are among the main use-cases for NFC. This published report, available to clients, contains forecasts for global NFC phone sales in 6 major regions, including North America, Western Europe, Asia Pacific, Central & Latin America, Central & Eastern Europe and Africa Middle East, from 2004 to 2017. The report also forecasts worldwide NFC handset sales by installed base and by device type, as well as analysis of the technology's drivers and adoption challenges.

March 13, 2013 07:04 woh

Strategy Analytics' global devices team was on the show floor at MWC 2013, the arguably most influential trade show in the mobile industry, for five days, meeting dozens of firms and executives. What new analysis did we make as a result of our meetings? What are the hot topics and disruptive products that MWC visitors were asking about? What will be major trends for smartphones and operating systems in the second half of 2013? We conducted a webinar on Mar 6 to present a lot of interesting and noticeable topics that we gathered during MWC 2013. All Strategy Analytics' clients are invited to see the replay here.

January 8, 2013 09:06 Neil Shah

Our Wireless Device Strategies (WDS) team is at CES this week.

Some key announcements from fast-growing companies at CES floor on Day 1.


Huawei stunned the industry launching two cutting edge premium phablets adding fuel to the already hot phablets war:

5.5 inch Huawei Ascend D2 & 6.1 inch Huawei Ascend Mate (world's biggest phablet) featuring its home-grown HiSilicon quad-core processors and rising on software experience curve adding its refreshed Emotion UI with host of enabling technologies such as DLNA, NFC, HDMI, waterproof, Huawei Air Sharing.

Huawei is well positioned to attack Asian and Europe markets for relatively cheaper but premium flagship Android phablets compared to competition.

Huawei Ascend D2

Huawei Ascend Mate



Sony Mobile Communications after integration into parent Sony separating from Ericsson almost 11 months ago is starting to quickly rise on Android experience curve. Sony Mobile was the third largest smartphone OEM at the end of Q3 2012 and the Japanese OEM will try to maintain this momentum moving into 2013 taking share away from HTC and others.

In light of this, Sony today announced its first flagship phablet Sony Xperia Z featuring a quad-core processor and sporting a FULL HD display, waterproof, a very advanced 13-MP camera capable of great shooting low-light images similar to Nokia Lumia 920 Pureview camera as well as the first smartphone to capture HDR Image and Video. Sony Xperia Z will compete against Samsung Galaxy Note II, LG Vu 2, Huawei Ascend Mate and other flagship phablets in coming months. The Go-To-Market strategy will be the key to the vendor's success.

Sony also announced range of NFC based accessories from stereo NFC-Bluetooth headphones to NFC Speakers and NFC based interaction with other Sony consumer electronics products branded under "Sony One Touch".


Voxx International

Voxx International has been steadily growing its accessories business and leadership over the past few years leveraging many of its brands such as AudioVoxx, Voxx, Klipsch, RCA. Voxx International today had series of announcements for accessories as well as appcessories from docks, headsets, bluetooth speakers, clock radios, wireless charging stands in home, automobiles, outdoors all cleveraging smartphones and different enabling technologies such as Bluetooth, Near Field Audio (NFA), Wireless Charging (Qi), Near Field Communication (NFC) and WiFi.

This is one of the key vendors shaping up its dominance in mobile accessories space worth keeping an eye on.


Soundflow Audio System (NFA)



808 Wireless NFC Headphones