Euro Q2 smartphone sales sky rocket

PDA sales up too - but losing ground to Nokia and co.

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The European PDA market is bouncing back, according to the latest figures from market watcher Canalys, with Palm and Sony doing particularly well out of growing demand for mobile devices.

That demand is highlighted by a 239 per cent increase in unit shipments between Q2 2002 and Q2 2003, Canalys reports. Of course, that growth was driven by sales of smartphones, notably Sony Ericsson's P800 and Nokia's 3650, but PDA have performed well too, the company said.

Shipments of PDAs with and without wireless communications - what Canalys terms 'data-centric devices' - jumped 51 per cent during the second quarter to 2003, from 415,350 units in Q2 2002 to 627,520. By contrast, shipments of smartphones 'voice-centric' handhelds - rocketed 1156 per cent during the same timeframe, from 85,050 devices to 1,068,430.

Among PDA providers, Palm and Sony showed significant year-on-year growth of 45 per cent and 64 per cent, respectively. HP's shipments grew too, by two per cent, but not enough to prevent its market share tumbling from 36 per cent to a quarter. Canalys said it expects HP to do better during Q3, thanks to new models and better inventory management. The release of Windows Mobile 2003 for Pocket PC may help too.

Medion came from nowhere thanks to a Pocket PC bundled with a GPS navigation system, all targeted at the German retail market.

However, the real winners in the PDA market were the unnamed vendors - the likes of Handspring, Casio, Toshiba etc. - who together saw 86 per cent growth and achieved better combined unit shipments than all but Palm.

PDA Vendor Shipments
Vendor Q2 2003
Q2 2003
Market share
Q2 2002
Q2 2002
Market share
Q2 2002
Palm 210,850 34% 145,080 35% 45%
HP 154,600 25% 151,530 36% 2%
Medion 47,450 8% N/A N/A N/A
Sony 46,100 7% 28,090 7% 64%
Others 168,520 27% 90,650 22% 86%
Source: Canalys

Among smartphone vendors, Nokia unsurprisingly took the lion's share of the market - 78 per cent of it. Indeed, Nokia shipped more smartphones during Q2 2003 than the PDA guys combined. The number two, Sony Ericsson, only accounted for 15 per cent of shipments, but its growth was almost four times that of its rival. Orange took five per cent of the market, thanks to its Microsoft Pocket PC-based SPV.

Smartphone Vendor Shipments
Vendor Q2 2003
Q2 2003
Market share
Q2 2002
Q2 2002
Market share
Q2 2002
Nokia 838,650 78% 59,220 70% 1316%
Sony Ericsson 164,750 15% 3,410 4% 4731%
Orange 58,070 5% N/A N/A N/A
Others 6,960 1% 22,420 26% -69%
Source: Canalys

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