Thu, Jan 03, 2013 - Page 14 News List

Hybrid devices set to see formidable growth in volume

Staff writer, with CNA

Hybrid mobile devices, including smartphones and tablet computers sized between 5 inches and 7 inches, are forecast to see strong volume growth in the next three years, Barclays PLC said yesterday.

Barclays estimates a compound annual growth rate of between 65 percent and 70 percent in the volume of these large-screen handsets from this year to 2015, driven by upgraded central processing units and display hardware, and pricing as low as US$200. Increases in the global long-term evolution (LTE) 4G network could also raise the bandwidth for faster multimedia mobility, increasing the popularity of these hybrid devices, dubbed “phablets,” Barclays said in a note.

South Korean-based Samsung Electronics Co appears to be the early winner in this hybrid category due to the strength of its display components, Dale Gai (蓋欣山), a Taipei-based analyst at Barclays, said in the note.

Moreover, hybrid devices will trigger a new product cycle and bring more orders in the first half of this year for laggards in the mobile market such as HTC Corp (宏達電) and South Korea’s LG Electronics Inc, Gai said.

He forecast that smartphones larger than 5 inches will account for 15 percent of total smartphone sales this year and 20 percent in 2015, compared with 5 percent currently.

Samsung is expected to ship 97 million units of over-5-inch smartphones this year, accounting for 68 percent of the overall market of 142.6 million units, followed by LG’s 11.5 million units, or an 8.1 percent market share, and HTC’s 10.8 million units with 7.6 percent share, Barclays said.

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