Strategy Analytics: Worldwide Smartphone Population Tops 1 Billion in Q3 2012

BOSTON--()--According to the latest research from Strategy Analytics, the number of smartphones in use worldwide surpassed the 1 billion-unit mark for the first time ever in the third quarter of 2012. It has taken 16 years for the smartphone industry to reach this historic milestone.

Scott Bicheno, Senior Analyst at Strategy Analytics, said, “The world’s first modern smartphone, the Nokia Communicator, was introduced in 1996. Nokia remained a dominant force in smartphones for over a decade until the arrival of Apple’s iconic iPhone in 2007. The iPhone revolutionized smartphone design and it catalyzed industry growth. By the third quarter of 2011, we estimate there were 708 million smartphones in use worldwide. After a further year of soaring demand, the number of smartphones in use worldwide reached 1.038 billion units during the third quarter of 2012.”

Neil Mawston, Executive Director at Strategy Analytics, said, “We estimate 1 in 7 of the world’s population owned a smartphone in the third quarter of 2012. Smartphone penetration is still relatively low. Most of the world does not yet own a smartphone and there remains huge scope for future growth, particularly in emerging markets such as China, India and Africa. The first billion smartphones in use worldwide took 16 years to reach, but we forecast the next billion to be achieved in less than three years, by 2015.”

Exhibit 1: Worldwide Smartphone Installed Base 1

                     

Smartphone Installed Base (Millions of Units)

   

Q3 2011

   

Q2 2012

   

Q3 2012

 
Worldwide     708     959     1038  
           
 

The full report, Global Smartphone Installed Base by Operating System for 88 Countries: 2007 to 2017, is published by the Strategy Analytics Wireless Smartphone Strategies (WSS) service, details of which can be found here: http://tinyurl.com/92kyedq.

About Strategy Analytics

Strategy Analytics is a global, independent research and consulting firm. The company is headquartered in Boston, USA, with offices in the UK, France, Germany, Japan, South Korea, India and China. Visit www.strategyanalytics.com for more information.

1 The installed base is defined as the number of smartphones in use. The installed base does not refer to the user base, subscription base or subscriber base.

Contacts

Strategy Analytics
Americas Contact:
Alex Spektor, +1 617-614-0726
ASpektor@strategyanalytics.com
or
EMEA Contact:
Neil Mawston, +44 1908 423 628
NMawston@strategyanalytics.com

Release Summary

The worldwide population of smartphones reached 1 billion units for the first time ever in the third quarter of 2012. It is a historic milestone for the industry.

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Contacts

Strategy Analytics
Americas Contact:
Alex Spektor, +1 617-614-0726
ASpektor@strategyanalytics.com
or
EMEA Contact:
Neil Mawston, +44 1908 423 628
NMawston@strategyanalytics.com