The EMEA smart mobile device market showed familiar trends in the third quarter of 2006, with another rise in shipments and Nokia still leading the way, according to research from analyst Canalys.
Growth in the quarter was 11.7 per cent year on year, compared with 10.6 per cent in Q2 2006.
Of the vendors, Nokia retained a comfortable lead with 75.2 per cent market share. The top performer in terms of growth was High Tech Computer, which recorded 279 per cent of year-on-year growth to stay second ahead of BlackBerry maker Research in Motion (RIM) for the second quarter running.
Sony Ericsson was fourth, ahead of Hewlett-Packard, which suffered a 39.5 per cent drop in growth caused by a shrinking hand-held sector.
In terms of operating systems used on the smart mobile devices, Symbian was the clear leader with 78.7 per cent market share. Microsoft took second place with 16.9 per cent and RIM came third with 3.5 per cent.
Chris Jones, principal analyst at Canalys, said: “The shift in demand for consumer Global Positioning System navigation and a move away from hand-helds to dedicated PNDs [Personal Navigation Devices], can really be seen in these numbers. If the trend continues it would not be surprising to see some vendors scale back their efforts in the hand-held market.”
Jones added that the fourth quarter of the year will be pivotal because it is usually the biggest-selling quarter for smart mobile devices, and underperformance may cause vendors to re-evaluate their positions.
Mark Cope, director at BlackBerry VAR Jem Telecom, said: “With the release of the new BlackBerry Pearl we will see RIM making more headway in the smart mobile device market.”
Cope added that BlackBerry was previously considered more an enterprise device than a smart mobile device.
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