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Researcher ups world mobile sales forecast

But warns component shortages may yet spoil things

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Mobile market watcher Strategy Analytics (SA) has upgraded its forecast for world mobile phone sales to 670m.

The not only represents a 14 per cent jump on the researcher's previous forecast, made last January, of 586m units, but a 29.5 per cent growth rate over SA's total for 2003. Last year, it calculates, vendors shipped some 517.2m handsets.

Fellow researcher iSuppli also uppped its annual handset shipments forecast this week.

SA's bullish forecast follows strong Q2 sales across the world. Some 156.9m units shipped, bringing the H1 2004 total to 312m units. Shipments were up 37.9 per cent year on year, down slightly on Q1 2004's year-on-year growth of 42.3 per cent, but well up on Q2 2003's annual growth rate of 13.9 per cent.

The researcher made one warning: that potential component shortages could hinder growth in Q4. But for now it expects strong growth during that quarter thanks to holiday sales. SA said it expects Q3 to be slightly weaker than Q2, with the bulk of H2's 358m shipments coming in Q4.

According to SA's numbers, four of the top six vendors saw shipments up more than 50 per cent year on year. Over the same time frame, Nokia and Siemens lost market share - by 7.1 and 0.5 percentage points, respectively - while Samsung saw the biggest gain, adding four percentage points to its market share.

It also gained 1.5 percentage points between Q2 2004 and Q1 2004. This time the big losers were Siemens and Motorola, down 1.7 and 0.9 percentage points respectively. ®

Q2 Global Mobile Phone Vendors
Rank Vendor Q2 2004 Shipments Q2 Market Share
1 Nokia 45.4m 28.9%
2 Motorola 24.1m 15.4%
3 Samsung 22.7m 14.5%
4 Siemens 10.4m 6.6%
5 Sony Ericsson 10.4m 6.6%
6 LG 9.9m 6.3%
  Others 34m 21.6%
  Total 156.9m 100%

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