Global sales of NFC-equipped smartphones increased tenfold to 30 million units in 2011, according to a report from Berg Insight. The research firm estimates that by 2016 there will more than 700 million handsets with NFC capabilities. In 2011, several leading handset vendors released more than 40 NFC-enabled devices. “Even though it will take some time before the stakeholders agree on business models for payment networks, other use cases such as reading tags and easy pairing of devices may well be compelling enough for handset vendors to integrate NFC in mid- and high-end devices already today,” said André Malm, a senior analyst at Berg Insight. Google has already launched its Wallet service, as Apple, AT&T, Verizon and T-Mobile ready their own payment platforms. Previous estimates stated that more than 50% of all smartphones will be NFC enabled in the next two to three years with the help of Apple’s upcoming iPhone, which has long been rumored to include the technology. Read on for Berg Insight’s press release. More →
Arguments have been made that web apps will gain momentum as mobile browsers become more capable, but not everyone sees mobile apps losing momentum any time soon. A new report from Berg Insights suggests that mobile app downloads will continue growing at a compound annual rate of 56.6% between last year and 2015, when nearly 1 trillion apps will be downloaded globally. ”Even though the download numbers will increase during the forecast period, most apps are free to download and app monetisation will be a challenge for developers”, Berg senior analyst Johan Svanberg said in a statement. “Free to download monetisation strategies such as in-app advertising and in-app purchasing will be increasingly important. This is especially true in the APAC region, which will account for over 40 percent of all mobile app downloads in 2015.” Berg Insights’ full press release follows below. More →
Google may have just unveiled its preliminary plans to bring contactless mobile payments to the U.S., but mobile payments in using various technologies are prime to blow up in several other markets around the world as well. Swedish wireless analyst firm Berg Insight on Thursday issued a report on mobile money in emerging markets, and the group believes adoption will skyrocket over the next four years. In 2010 there were 133 million people in emerging markets who used their cell phones to move money or pay for goods and services. That number is set to grow an average of 40% each year to reach 709 million in 2015, the firm believes. Over that same period, the total value of mobile payment transactions will balloon from $25 billion in 2010 to $215 billion in 2015. “In developing regions such as Africa the mobile phone will become the primary digital channel for people to conduct financial services in the coming years,” said Telecom Analyst Lars Kurkinen. “Financial institutions are beginning to realize the importance of mobile phones to reach new clients viewing mobile money services as high-priority strategic projects. Also mobile operators and third party service providers are ramping up their efforts to target the huge unbanked populations in emerging markets.” Hit the break for Berg’s full release. More →
According to new data issued by wireless market intelligence firm Berg Insight on Thursday, the global smartphone market grew by nearly three-quarters in 2010. Global smartphone shipments hit 295 million units for the year, a 74% increase over 2009 totals. The firm anticipates that shipments will hit a staggering 1.2 billion units in 2015, at which time there will be an estimated 2.8 billion smartphone users scattered across the globe. Berg sees the bulk of the growth coming from mid and low-end smartphone sales, which will continue to become more capable moving forward. “Chipset developers and handset vendors are working on technologies that will ensure a good user experience also for low cost smartphones,” said Senior Analyst André Malm in a statement. “The challenge is to develop a handset with enough memory, graphics performance and processing power to run the operating system with multiple applications while ensuring a responsive system with fluid user interface and still keep costs down.” Hit the break for the full press release. More →
In a report titled Emerging Wireless Consumer Devices published this month by Berg Insight, the firm claims that sales of connected consumer devices will grow 77% in 2011. Berg estimates that 22 million consumer devices with embedded cellular connectivity were sold in 2010, and that number will nearly double in 2011 to 39 million. In 2015, Berg thinks over 270 million connected consumer devices will be sold globally, representing a compound annual growth rate of 65%. The category, as defined by Berg, includes devices with integrated cellular connectivity such as tablets and eReaders, and it excludes cell phones. The firm also notes that connected portable gaming consoles such as Sony’s NGP will be a new and significant entrant into the category later this year.