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Q2 figures show strong growth in handset sales

Nokia and Motorola lead the pack as emerging markets drive sales

The latest figures from market research firm Gartner show that worldwide mobile phone handset sales rose by some 21 per cent year on year in the second quarter, with every major territory showing growth apart from Japan.

Emerging markets in Asia, Eastern Europe and Africa were the biggest drivers of the growth, with the high-tech bastions of South Korea and Japan down at the bottom of the table - with Japan showing negative growth, and South Korea almost entirely flat.

Nokia and Motorola were the biggest beneficiaries of the market growth, with Nokia continuing to grow its market share back towards its former dominant level, taking 31.9 per cent of the market (up from 29.6 per cent last year) and selling some 60.7 million handsets.

Back in second place, meanwhile, Motorola also saw a rise in its market share, growing over two per cent year on year with a jump to 17.9 per cent from 15.7 per cent, and sales of some 34 million handsets.

At the opposite end of the table, however, Siemens saw its market share dipping seriously - falling from 6.9 per cent market share last year to a mere 4.7 per cent this year, with unit shipments plummeting almost 2 million units to 8.89 million.

Despite the strong growth shown in the overall figures, one worrying trend did emerge from Gartner's research - with consumers apparently showing little interest in replacing their tried and trusted 2G and 2.5G handsets with new 3G devices.

Adoption of those handsets and technologies may be somewhat smaller than expected, then; but there's little doubt that the market as a whole is still growing apace, with Gartner predicting that some 780 million handsets will be sold during calendar 2005.

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