Q1 Mobile Phone Shipments Frankly Just Awful
The econalypse is playing hell with the mobile phone market. Handset vendors world-wide shipped 244.8 million units in the first quarter of 2009, 15.8 percent fewer than the 290.8 million units shipped during the same quarter in 2008. That’s the word from market intelligence outfit IDC, which said the decline was particularly ugly due to weak end-user demand and currency volatility. The lone bright spot in the report: a four percent increase in shipments of smartphones, which have so far defied the recession.
“That the worldwide mobile phone market started off 2009 with a year-over-year decline highlights just how much the economic recession has affected all industries, including the wireless market,” Ramon Llamas, IDC senior research analyst, said in a statement. “The market continues to adapt to the new economic reality with both vendors and retailers exercising caution to remain profitable. In some cases, this has meant holding less inventory, or even reducing headcount. Fortunately, new features and demand for phones will help the market resist the financial pressure. We expect to see further year-over-year declines worldwide, even as some regions show signs of improvement.”