Gartner’s latest research shows that despite the market increasing by nearly 14% in Q1 08, sales in Europe actually decreased by 16.4% compared to Q1 07.
“Sales of high-end devices in particular were lower as consumers turned to mid-tier devices when looking to upgrade their old phones. Phone manufacturers should strengthen their mid-tier offerings in order to cater to those users that might be reticent to invest too much money in replacing their old phones when the economic environment remains challenging.”
It also ties in with Symbian’s slowdown in growth with Nomura analyst Richard Windsor saying…
"Demand for mid- to high-tier consumer handsets continues to suffer from the weakening economy in both (the) U.S. and western Europe"
This information possibly suggests that handset OEMs are out of sync with what consumers will want over the coming years. They are currently concentrating on iPhone-like devices that may be expensive and less desirable if the economic environment becomes more challenging. Maybe they should put more effort into pushing smartphone-like functionality down to the mid-tier.