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Handheld sales keep downhill slide

Posted: 18 May 2007 ?? ?Print Version ?Bookmark and Share

Keywords:IDC report? handheld device market? handheld sales?

The worldwide handheld device market continues to suffer from declining popularity and the exit of major vendor Dell, as it posted its 13th straight quarter of year-on-year decline, IDC's Worldwide Handheld QView revealed.

Vendors shipped just over 900,000 handheld devices in the first quarter of year, the report found. This is down 36.3 percent from the previous quarter and 40.6 percent less than the units sold in the same quarter of 2006.

Ramon Llamas, research analyst with IDC's Mobile Device Technology and Trends team, said the emergence of feature-rich mobile devices is hurting the handheld device market. "Personal information management, the key feature that once distinguished handheld devices, can now be found commonly on converged mobile devices," he said. Laptop computers that are getting cheaper by the moment is not helping stem the decline.

Llamas also noted the decrease in shipments coinciding with Dell's announcement that it was leaving the industry. "Dell's exit from the handheld device market underscores the market's decline," the analyst said.

Palm Inc. suffered a dip in shipments in the January-March period, sending out just 295,250 units, but it remains on top of its game with a 32.1 percent market share. HP also saw a drop in shipment volumes at 199,400 units but nevertheless narrowed the gap over its rival vendor at number two.

Mio Technology Inc. posted the only positive year-on-year change at number three, cornering 15.1 percent of the market with 138,631 units shipped in the quarter to overtake Dell. Sharp registered the largest year-on-year decline at number five.

IDC's Worldwide Handheld QView provides device vendors, software developers, service providers, and component suppliers with information on the worldwide handheld market.




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