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Global mobile handset shipments to reach 1.5 billion by 2011

Analysys forecasts 3-way split in handset functionality

The global annual shipment of mobile handsets is set to climb from just over 800 million in 2005 to reach 1.5 billion over the next five years, according to a new report from telecoms, IT and media research firm Analysys.

In a new report entitled "Evolution of Mobile Handsets to 2011 and Beyond: market analysis and forecasts", the company predicts that consumer demand in both emerging and developed markets will prompt a three-way split in handset categories.

Voice-centric devices will continue to account for approximately 50 per cent of shipment in emerging markets, whilst developed markets will see a continued increase in the availability of voice-centric, converged-function and specialist handsets, the report claims.

Dr Yanli Suo-Saunders, author of the report, commented: "The handset market is transforming as traditional voice-centric devices diversify with the incorporation of a range of multimedia functions."

"Future handsets will develop into voice-centric, converged-function and specialist categories, driven by increasingly segmented consumer demand."

In order to capture and maintain a solid market share, voice-centric device manufacturers need to concentrate on design, usability, enhanced functionality and cost, the report suggests.

Converged-function handsets will need to evolve to incorporate compelling features to attract consumer attention. Analysys predicts that such devices will gain a 30 per cent market share in developed markets by 2011.

The report further forecasts that specialist "best in class" handsets will comfortably take the lead in overall volume in the majority of developed economies.

"In emerging markets, voice-centric handsets will still constitute the largest single product category in the market; while in developed economies, converged-function and specialist handsets will take the lead in 2011," Suo-Saunders added.

The full report is available to purchase directly from Analysys, priced GBP 1700 (approximately 2,450 Euro).

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