People want smartphones, as evident by a new report indicating global smartphone shipments totaled an estimated 54M units during Q1 2010, growing 50% from Q1 2009 when 36M units were shipped.
The report, published by Strategy Analytics under the name “Global Smartphone Market Share Update,” also indicates Nokia shipped a record 21.5 million smartphones worldwide in Q1 2010, rising an above-average 57% from 13.7 million units a year earlier.
According to the report, RIM shipped 10.6 million smartphones worldwide in Q1 2010- beating Apple’s record 8.8 million units during the quarter, and positioning itself as the largest mobile device vendor of North American origin, ahead of rivals Apple and Motorola. RIM’s annual growth rate slowed to just 45 percent in Q1 2010, however, and its new Blackberry OS 6.0 upgrade due in Q3 2010 is badly needed.
Smartphones now account for 18% of total handset shipments, with sales being driven largely by healthy operator subsidies, vigorous competition between vendors and a growing tide of lower-cost models using operating software like Symbian and Android, the report suggests.