The mobile phone market in Western Europe has started growing again, according to new figures from the International Data Corporation (IDC). Its European Quarterly Mobile Phone Tracker shows a 1.3% year-on-year increase in shipments to 44.8 million units following three consecutive quarters of decline.
Total smartphone shipments increased 37% to 28.2 million units, while feature phone shipments were down 30% to 16.6 million units. Overall, smartphones accounted for 63% of total handset shipments in Western Europe.
Francisco Jeronimo, European mobile devices research manager at IDC, said “Despite the fragile economic environment in most European countries, higher unemployment rates, and less disposable income, consumers showed that they are still willing to invest in smartphones when manufacturers understand their needs and offer them the right products. During the quarter the biggest contribution to the segment came from the most expensive devices. The top-tier price band - devices priced over €400 - accounted for 49% of total smartphone shipments in the region, compared with 46% in 1Q11, with Apple’s iPhone 4S and the Samsung Galaxy S II toping the sales ranking.”
Android shipments increased 124% year on year to 15.5 million units, representing 55% of total smartphone shipments. Shipments of Apple iOS devices were up 59% to 7 million units, giving Apple a 25% share of the smartphone market.
BlackBerry shipments were down 27% to 2.5 million units, while Symbian shipments were down 70% year-on-year.
Windows Phone almost doubled its market share, increasing shipments by 156% year on year to represent 4.1% of total smartphone shipments.
Samsung, Apple and RIM (BlackBerry) were the top manufacturers of smartphones; Samsung leading with 39% of shipments in Q1 of 2012. When smartphone and featurephone figures are combined, the three top manufacturers were Samsung (40%), Nokia (19%) and Apple (16%).