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.

April 18, 2014 01:14 woh

According to a recently published report from our Wireless Device Strategies (WDS) service, 'Handset Sales Forecast by Type: Phablet, Superphone, Smartphone, Feature Phone & Basic Phone', the superphone and phablet segments are estimated to dominate global handset market through 2020, largely boosted by consumers' strong preference for larger display size than 4 inch. In contrast, feature phone segment will be steadily slowing, with the transition to smartphones in many emerging countries expected.

Our in-depth report, available to our paid clients, forecasts global mobile phone sales by type from 2003 to 2020, identifying which categories will grow at above-average rates during the next 7 years. Types of devices covered include super-phablets, standard phablets, superphones, standard smartphones, smart feature phones, standard feature phones and basic phones.

April 2, 2014 12:01 sbicheno

After suffering a number of setbacks in the wake of the global economic crisis, the global handset market is set to maintain healthy growth in 2014.

Strategy Analytics’ Wireless Device Strategies (WDS) service forecasts global handset sales will grow by 7% in 2014. Growth will mainly be driven by developing markets, with Asia Pacific, Central & Latin America and Africa Middle East forecast to the main contributors. The five largest country markets will be: China, India, United States, Brazil and Indonesia.

In many developing markets a significant proportion of the population do not yet own a mobile phone. You can now get good feature phones for very low prices and the entry price point for smartphones is getting lower by the day, so it’s easier than ever for people who earn little to get into the mobile phone market. 

February 11, 2014 01:29 woh

Strategy Analytics' analysts from our Wireless Device Strategies (WDS) research service will be pounding the floor at Mobile World Congress (MWC) 2014 in Barcelona, Spain, from Sunday 23rd to Thursday 27th February, 2014. It is the world's most important trade show for the mobile industry.

We will be blogging live from the show every day.

Here are five major trends that we recommend clients / journalists / techies look out for at this year's event:

1. Wearables will, of course, be a major buzzword. Smartwatches, smartglasses and fitness / health bands will be the primary products on display. There will be also be a long tail of emerging wearable devices for niche markets, from smartsocks to smartmedics. We recommend you visit major companies like Samsung, LG, Huawei and Broadcom.

2. More curved smartphones will be on show. We saw dozens of curved TVs from Asian brands at CES 2014, and two curved smartphones, the Samsung Galaxy Round and LG G Flex. Curved smartphones will gain market traction faster than curved TVs. Curved smartphones are the first step to a future of rollable touchscreens. Innovative companies to visit will be Samsung and LG. Will the new, rumored Samsung Galaxy S5 have a curved display?

3. Global expansion of the rising Chinese smartphone vendors. After dominating at home in China, many Chinese brands are now turning their eyes overseas, such as the valuable United States market. Major vendors you should visit include Huawei, ZTE, TCL-Alcatel and Lenovo-Motorola. Keep an eye out, too, for any Indian players, like Micromax.

4. The rise of affordable 4G handsets. The majority of LTE handsets available until last year have been in the premium price-range. However, the China LTE market is about to soar in 2014, due to China Mobile. Low prices will be the key to unlock rapid growth. Companies to visit include Samsung, Qualcomm and MediaTek.

5. Faster LTE-A CA (Carrier Aggregation) and TD-LTE will excite the tech geeks among us. We recommend you experience the multiple LTE-A devices and TD-LTE devices on show from numerous handset vendors, such as Samsung or Huawei. The era of "mobile fiber" is here.

Please check back to see our daily blogs and further updates on MWC 2014 every day during the show. We look forward to seeing you soon in beautiful Barcelona!



September 19, 2013 18:19 sbicheno

The feeling prior to Apple's recent launch of the iPhone 5s and 5c was that the tech giant needed to introduce a cheaper phone if it wanted to exploit the rapid growth in smartphone shipments in developing markets and keep growing its global handset market share. But Apple decided instead to launch a colourful iPhone variant that is slightly cheaper than the top-of-the-range 5s, but still a premium-priced product.

The big question of how, if at all, this unprecedented fork in the iPhone product roadmap will affect overall apple handset shipments is addressed by a newly-published Strategy Analytics report: Global Handset Shipments Forecast by Vendor by Quarter: 2000 to 2014. In this report we forecast the quarterly global handset shipments of the top 11 vendors through to the end of 2014. Subscribers of our Wireless Device Strategies (WDS) service can use the report to anticipate fluctuations in the global handset market and inform their near-term planning.

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.

May 11, 2012 08:58 nmawston

Global mobile handset shipments grew +4% annually during Q1 2012. Developed and developing markets delivered moderated growth. Africa, Asia and Latin America were the key markets contributing to growth, with Samsung, Apple & ZTE driving volumes higher. Samsung became the number one handset vendor globally, overtaking Nokia for the first time ever during the quarter. Apple edged up to third place for the first time in the huge Asia region. This report details quarterly handset marketshare for the world's top 30 vendors in North America, Central & Latin America, Western Europe, Central & Eastern Europe, Africa Middle East and Asia Pacific. Historical data by quarter from 2004 to Q1 2012 are included. Clients for our Wireless Device Strategies (WDS) service can download the published report here.

December 14, 2011 11:28 nmawston

Strategy Analytics forecasts worldwide HTML5 phone sales will surge from 336 million units in 2011 to 1 billion units in 2013. HTML5 has quickly become a hyper-growth technology that will help smartphones, feature phones, tablets, notebooks, desktop PCs, televisions and vehicles to converge through cloud services.

We forecast worldwide HTML5 phone sales to hit 1 billion units per year in 2013. Growth for HTML5 phones is being driven by robust demand from multiple hardware vendors and software developers in North America, Europe and Asia who want to develop rich media services across multiple platforms, including companies like Adobe, Apple, Google and Microsoft. We define an HTML5 phone as a mobile handset with partial or full support for HTML5 technology in the browser, such as the Apple iPhone 4S.

We believe HTML5 will help smartphones, feature phones, tablets, notebooks, desktop PCs, televisions and vehicles to converge in the future. HTML5 will be a pivotal technology in the growth of a multi-screen, 4G LTE cloud that is emerging for mobile operators, device makers, car manufacturers, component vendors and Web app developers. With its potential to transcend some of the barriers faced by native apps, such as cross-platform usability, HTML5 is a market that no mobile stakeholder can afford to ignore.

However, despite surging growth of HTML5 phone sales, we caution that HTML5 is still a relatively immature technology. HTML5 currently has limited APIs and feature-sets to include compared with native apps on platforms such as Android or Apple iOS. It will require several years of further development and standards-setting before HTML5 can fully mature to reach its potential as a unified, multi-platform content-enabler.

The full report, Global HTML5 Handset Sales Forecast, is published by our Wireless Device Strategies (WDS) service, details of which can be found at this link: http://www.strategyanalytics.com/default.aspx?mod=reportabstractviewer&a0=6901.

May 3, 2011 12:46 tkang

I've recently been to the Huawei Analyst Summit held in China with colleagues and as a device analyst the biggest news for me was that Huawei had decided to promote its brand this year. It's official now. Huawei is growing out of the ODM vendor business.

We've been tracking Huawei for quite some time and ever since they had entered the ranks of the top 10 manufacturers I had been expecting them to think about their brand. It's quite obvious as handsets are part of consumer electronics and without brand you can't grow beyond a certain point. It seems Huawei has reached that point. Huawei shipped 29 million units in 2009 and 30 million units in 2010 so they have actually hit a wall. In my view they should've made the decision a bit earlier, perhaps Q2 last year.

It's interesting to see how vendors shift strategies during their stages of growth. If you don't do at the right time and don't do it the right way you lose momentum and start falling so this is an important moment for Huawei.


Samsung and LG were success stories as they quickly grew out of an ODM for operators like Sprint and Orange. Sharp was once a larger ODM for operators in Europe than Samsung but they failed to promote their own brand and are now completely dwarfed in the Western markets. Companies like Compal Communications once shipped more than 50 million units a year as an ODM but stayed there and now they barely ship 15 to 20 million units a year.

Huawei is a bit late to this game but better late than never. If they start brand promoting now it will be mostly building brand awareness and finding a position in the market and a place in the consumers mind. Getting associated with the emerging mid tier smartphone category will be the best option for now but they'll have to work diligently before bigger players enter the segment. By the end of the year the results will show and it will define next years growth. I have a good feeling at this point as Huawei has always excelled on speed while maintaining quality in the past and that is a very important quality to seize a niche in the market.