Symbian has just released their Symbian Market Round-up. The most interesting part is the following two graphs…
This appears to put mobile Linux and the Apple iPhone into perspective. Also, nearly all the vendors seem to be making yearly market gains. This looks good, but is it?
What this chart doesn’t show is that the smartphone market is still relatively small compared to the whole phone market. The whole phone market was 1 Billion units in 2007 and is estimated to be 1.2 Billion in 2008. Now that’s a 20% increase. Hence, it could be said that about 20% of the growth of sales of smartphones is actually being fuelled by an general increase in sales of mobile phones rather than people switching to smartphones.
However, I suspect it’s more complex than this as you have to look into why there has been a 20% increase in the market – it’s mainly due to developing markets that probably don’t generally buy smartphones anyway.