Global Smartphone Sales To Reach 1 Billion Units By 2014
April 13, 2012

Global Smartphone Sales To Reach 1 Billion Units By 2014

Global sales of smartphones will grow 46% this year, to 688 million units, and will reach 1 billion units in 2014, according to Credit Suisse analysts.

The growth will be driven by strong demand from China and the introduction of less costly, lower-end handsets, the brokerage firm said.

"We see robust growth for the smartphone market in China, which we think will account for 22 percent of global units by 2015," wrote Credit Suisse analyst Kulbinder Garcha in a research note to Reuters.

Garcha restated his ℠outperform´ rating on shares of Apple´s stock, and increased his target price to $750 from $700 based on higher iPhone sales volumes.

“On our proprietary smartphone scorecard, we judge strengths and weaknesses for major smartphone vendors across 9 factors, ranging from software/services to intellectual property rights,” he wrote.

“Across these metrics, we rank Apple first and conclude that even 5 years after the launch of first iPhone, few vendors come close in comprehensively closing this gap.”

Credit Suisse predicted that Apple would achieve a 23 percent market share in 2012/2013, due to the company´s robust distribution network, software/services platform and hardware innovation.

“Apple is materially advantaged versus peers as its vertically integrated structure allows it to simultaneously address all three aspects of the compute market — PCs, tablets and smartphones — effectively driving a virtuous circle of competitiveness,” Forbes quoted Garcha as saying.

“Much of the innovation comes in software, enhanced by a broad range of “i services” which are hard to replicate.”

Credit Suisse said it expects Nokia Corp. to recover its earnings in 2013, and ultimately achieve an 11 percent market share based on carrier support, competitive pricing and the overall strength of its brand.

Nokia said on Wednesday that it would post losses in the first two quarters of this year as it works to strengthen its product portfolio to better compete with rivals.

Credit Suisse also predicted Samsung and Huawei would grow their market share, while Blackberry maker Research In Motion, Motorola, HTC and Sony would see their market shares fall.