Mobile shipments in Western Europe down 4.2 per cent in Q1


Total shipments fall to 43.6 million units according to IDC, while smartphone shipments grew at the slowest rate since the analyst started tracking the mobile market nine years ago

Total mobile phone shipments in Western Europe fell 4.2 per cent year-on-year in Q1 to 43.6 million units due to a lower than expected slowdown in shipments.

This is according to IDC’s ‘European Mobile Phone Tracker’, which showed smartphone shipments were up 12 per cent annually to 31.6 million units – the lowest growth rate since IDC started tracking the mobile phone market in 2004. Feature phone shipments were down 31 per cent to 12 million units.

Samsung increased its market share by six per cent annually to almost cater for half of the industry with 46 per cent, with shipments up by 1.8 million to 19.9 million units. Apple climbed to second, despite shipments falling by 800,000 to 6.2 million, while Nokia’s shipments fell 2.6 million to 6.1 million units. Both had markt share of 14 per cent in the quarter.

Samsung also maintained its lead in the smartphone market, with its share rising six per cent to 45 per cent, and shipments up 3.4 million to 14.3 million units. Apple remained in second, despite seeing its market share slip from 25 per cent to 20 per cent.

Sony Mobile rose to third after increasing its share by four per cent to 10 per cent, as shipments doubled to 3.2 million units. LG more than quadrupled its market share and shipments to eight per cent and 2.4 million units respectively. Nokia slipped from third to fifth after seeing its market share almost halve to five per cent as shipments fell from 2.3 million to 1.6 million units.

In terms of operating systems, Google’s Android OS shipped 21.9 million units with market share increasing to 69 per cent from 55 per cent, while iOS declined to 20 per cent from 25 per cent. Windows Phone is now the third biggest OS in the region, after its share rose to six per cent from four per cent.

IDC European mobile devices research director Francisco Jeronimo said: “We are now entering the second wave of smartphone adoption in the region. The first wave was driven by those users looking for devices that would meet their mobility needs. They did look for the best devices in terms of performance and user experience, and more importantly, they were able to afford and pay a premium to get a premium experience. We are now entering the second wave of smartphone adoption, which will be driven by those users with no need for a smartphone.

“These new users are looking to replace their current feature phones with another feature phone, as smartphones are fancy gadgets that they don’t feel the need to have. However, when they go to a phone shop most of the options available are smartphones only; their friends, colleagues and family may have smartphones and are always talking about the latest apps, and the cheapest smartphones they note are most likely to be as low in price as the last feature phone they bought. With a small push from sales people, the sale is almost guaranteed. But they will buy one of the cheapest smartphones as they still see no value for money.”