Mon, Jan 07, 2013 - Page 13 News List

Five-inch smartphones to light up fair: analysts

BIG FUTURE:A move to larger screens for mobile devices, some of which will be on display at a trade show in Nevada this week, could drive up chip sales

Staff writer, with CNA

A flurry of 5-inch or larger smartphones is expected to be showcased at the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) this week, creating a growth catalyst for chip designers such as Qualcomm Inc, according to US brokerage Morgan Stanley.

Scheduled to run from tomorrow through Friday in Las Vegas, Nevada, the CES is likely to feature Qualcomm-powered Android phones such as the Optimus G2 from LG Electronics Inc, the Xperia Z from Sony Corp and the Grand S from ZTE Corp (中興), the brokerage announced in a report on Friday.

LARGER SCREENS

These devices have displays of 5 inches or more, confirming the trend toward larger screens and showing a positive factor for Qualcomm’s royalty business, Morgan Stanley said.

The US brokerage expected that Taiwan’s HTC Corp (宏達電) may also release its new M7 flagship smartphone at the CES, which will run on Qualcomm’s Snapdragon processor.

China’s Huawei Technologies Co (華為) is expected to release several new “Ascend” models at the annual tech fair, several of which could use Qualcomm’s mobile chips, Morgan Stanley said.

Taiwanese media reported last week that HTC’s M7 would sport a 4.7-inch full HD display, a 1.7-gigahertz quad-core processor from Qualcomm and a 13-megapixel camera, citing industry sources.

British bank Barclays PLC forecast that smartphones that are more than 5 inches long will account for 15 percent of total smartphone sales this year and 20 percent in 2015, compared with the current 5 percent.

South Korean giant Samsung Electronics Co is expected to ship approximately 97 million units of over 5-inch smartphones this year and will remain the top manufacturer in this category, accounting for 68 percent of the overall market of 142.6 million units, Barclays said.

LG is likely to rank second with 11.5 million units, or an 8.1 percent market share, followed by HTC’s 10.8 million units and 7.6 percent share, the bank said.

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