How Big is the Mobile Phone Market, Circa Now?

Tiernan Ray uses his Technology Trader column at Barron’s this weekend to look at the winners and losers of the mobile market.

In terms of the industry’s sheer size, he notes the following:

The industry could sell some 886 million smartphones this year, nearly half of all mobile phones, up 31% from last year’s total, according to analysts. That’s 2½ times the total of personal computers that were sold in 2012…Indeed, worldwide smartphone sales rose an impressive 43% last year, although that was down from 58% in 2011 and 72% in 2010, the year that they really took off, following increases of just 24% in 2009 and 14% in 2008, according to research firm Gartner.

The next big thing, says Ray, is the trade-up from 3G to LTE and, subsequently, LTE Advanced. So long as the phones and networks keep improving, people will keep replacing devices. The 4 billion potential users of 3G and 4G phones whop have not gotten there yet should be a huge boon to Qualcomm – the baseband chip company with all the patents, no matter which phone you guy (full disclosure, we are long QCOM in client accounts).

Head over for more…


Winners and Losers in the Next Smartphone War (Barron’s)

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