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Again, not news, especially if you look at the details. It’s still shocking with the figure of 53.2% regardless. But, with quotes like “Palm has had the same models, including the TX, Z22, and Tungsten E2, on the market for more than two years“, and “Fujitsu-Siemens was the only vendor among the top five to post positive year-on-year growth, although the improvement was the result of shipping approximately one thousand more units over the previous year” it’s not terribly surprising why there’s a declining trend. How likely are you in buying something that came out years ago and paying about the same inflated prices when there are newer models of other cell phones and smartphones offering newer technology, not to mention iPods or iPhones?
The handheld device market, already in the throes of unit decline, failed to post a seasonal sequential increase in shipments during the fourth quarter. According to IDC’s Worldwide Handheld QView, vendors shipped a total of 683,004 units in the fourth quarter, marking a 53.2% decrease from the same quarter a year ago and a 6.0% decrease from the previous quarter. For the full year, vendors shipped a total of 3.0 million units worldwide, down 44.3% from the 5.5 million units shipped during all of 2006.
“In most mature markets, the fourth quarter typically brings an increase in shipments to meet holiday demand, but this was not the case for the handheld device market,” said Ramon Llamas, senior research analyst with IDC’s Mobile Devices Technology and Trends team. “User interest has shifted away from handheld devices to others that can perform the same tasks, but include features that better meet user demand. The best example of this is the converged mobile device, or smartphone, that can do personal information management and other handheld device functions, but can also make phone calls, making it a better alternative for most consumers.”
Full details over at Linux Electrons
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