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.

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

December 21, 2011 16:30 Alex Spektor

The impending avalanche of NFC phones, which our Wireless Device Strategies (WDS) service projects to grow at an average of 67% per year over the next five years, has everybody thinking about contactless payments. With all the buzz around Google's soft-launched Wallet service and the US carrier joint venture ISIS, which should roll out in 2012, it makes sense. Indeed, the simple fact that money is directly involved in this particular application of NFC rightfully encourages the whole wireless value chain to think about potential revenue opportunities.

However, there is one often overlooked application for NFC -- intelligent device pairing. The idea is simple: instead of inputting PINs, passkeys, or even 26 hexadecimal digits to pair two wireless devices, the user simply "taps" two NFC devices together. The concept can be applied for any pairing event, regardless of which enabling technology, such as Wi-Fi or Bluetooth, is used to make the actual connection.

So far, only one handset vendor has actively promoted NFC for this application. Nokia's latest NFC-enabled handsets and Bluetooth headsets can be paired together using this very concept. Unfortunately, the latest Windows Lumia devices are not yet in this category, as Microsoft has not yet added NFC support to its platform. Nevertheless, Nokia's attention to NFC tech is a positive sign for the vendor's future portfolio. Nokia's strategy holds two key benefits: it future-proofs handsets, getting them ready for mobile contactless payment services once they eventually roll out, and it improves the usability of a typically cumbersome process.

Chip supplier Broadcom, whose interests span Bluetooth, Wi-Fi, and NFC has also recognized this useful application of the emerging tech, and we expect its chipsets and middleware to help device vendors think beyond mobile payments as they develop their NFC smartphones and tablets.

Alex Spektor
Wireless Device Strategies

December 16, 2011 15:18 Alex Spektor

Analysts from our Wireless Device Strategies (WDS) service attended the recent 2011 Broadcom Analyst Day held in New York City, where the semiconductor firm highlighted its recent successes in the wireless chipset space and outlined a strategy for further growth.

Broadcom's major revenue growth driver so far has been the proliferation of its "combo chip" wireless connectivity solution, providing enabling technologies like Bluetooth, Wi-Fi, GPS, and NFC. The solution, Broadcom claims, gives them a typical ASP of US $6-8, which provides a healthy contribution thanks to Broadcom's strong marketshare. Moving forward, Broadcom is seeking revenue uplift from going after the combination baseband/applications processor/GPU market, which together with the wireless combo chip would yield to Broadcom a per-handset ASP of US$12-30. Indeed, Broadcom are already well on their way, and according to our Handset Component Technologies team, Broadcom broke into top-five smartphone AP chip supplier rankings during Q3 2011.

The first phase of Broadcom's long-term plan targets the low-end smartphone market, where Broadcom claims that its solution delivers better performance, dollar for dollar. In particular, Broadcom is targeting cost-sensitive Indian and Chinese microvendors, which are small individually but, according to our Wireless Device Strategies service, together represented about 1 in 10 handsets shipped worldwide during Q3 2011. Going after the low-end smartphone segment, we believe, is a wise decision. Indeed, according to our Wireless Smartphone Strategies (WSS) service, more than half of all smartphones will be priced below US$200 wholesale globally in just a few years.

The second phase of Broadcom's long-term plan will be to target the emerging LTE market. Indeed, we expect well over 100 million LTE phones to be sold during the next two years. Coupled with the technology's significantly above-average ASPs, makes it an attractive market for Broadcom to target.

Ultimately, the success of Broadcom's long-term strategy depends on their ability to gain design wins with microvendors and megavendors alike. The recent success of the Broadcom-powered Samsung Galaxy Y is an early indicator that initial momentum is in the right direction.

Alex Spektor
Wireless Device Strategies