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A Shakeout Is Coming
We asked Michael Disabato, a managing vice president of Networks and Telecom at Gartner, for his take on the numbers. He told us the market will soon see a shakeout that will change the numbers game.
“The day is coming when people have already tried iOS and they don’t like it or already tried Android and they don’t like it -- and they are going to switch for good,” Disabato said. “Consumers are going to end up where they want to be within the next year or so and you are not going to see these numbers jumping around. There’s too much investment in applications.”
Speaking of investments, smartphone average selling prices (ASPs) has continued to decline as the appetite for more affordable devices grows. ASPs were down 12.5 percent in the third quarter, accounting for an average price of $317. At the same time, the market has seen a huge influx of large-screen smartphones, also known as phablets.
Large-screen devices generally come with higher selling prices than smaller screen devices, due to the need for more powerful and expensive components. Phablet ASPs in the third quarter were notably higher than the market average at $443, IDC reported. However, the third quarter ASP was down 22.8 percent from the $573 phablet ASP in the year-ago period.
"Almost all successful Android vendors have added one or more 5-inch to 7-inch phablets to their product portfolios," said Ryan Reith, a program director with IDC's Worldwide Quarterly Mobile Phone Tracker. "And Nokia’s recent announcement of the Lumia 1320 and 1520 put them in the category as well. In the third quarter of 2013, phablet shipments accounted for 21 percent of the smartphone market, up from just 3 percent a year ago. We believe the absence of a large-screen device may have contributed to Apple's inability to grow share in the third quarter."