Global smartphone shipments - additional information
Shipments for smartphones are expected to amount to around 1.45 billion by 2018, a tenfold increase from the amount of shipments in 2009. This means that by 2017, an estimated 31 percent of the world’s population will have a smartphone, a figure that was at less than 10 percent in 2011. This upturn in the smartphone market has developed it into a multi-billion dollar industry with revenue projected to reach almost 429 billion U.S. dollars in 2016.
The global success of this industry can be attributed to the growing popularity of several key operating systems, namely Android and iOS. By the end of 2016, these two companies held over 95 percent of the global smartphone market share, with Android alone controlling over 80 percent. This amounted to 352.67 million Android units and 77.04 million iOS units being shipped in the final quarter of 2016. The domination in the market from Android looks set to continue with the shipment of Android phones in 2016 expected to hit around 680 million units.
However, despite both Apple and Android being based in the U.S., it is the Chinese smartphone industry that looks set to dominate the market in the coming years. Forecasts predict that China will control just under a third of the smartphone market in 2017, in comparison to the U.S.’s estimated share of 12.1 percent.