On Thursday LG’s Park Jong Seok, head of the mobile phone business, announced that his company is cutting its full-year smartphone sales forecast by 20% and now expects to sell 24 million smartphones in 2011, down from its earlier forecast of 30 million units. According to Bloomberg, Park noted that the mobile phone business is “slowly” improving but couldn’t provide a firm time on when investors would see improvement on the company’s balance sheet. “It’s hard to give an exact timing, because there are so many market variables, and the situation changes quickly,” he said. Park expects LG to sell 1.7 million units of its new Optimus 3D smartphone by the end of the year and said “we want to differentiate ourselves with good hardware such as the 3D model by taking advantage of what we are strong at, like displays.” On June 4th, LG’s CEO, Koo Bon Joon, said that his company would have a difficult time turning around its troubled handset business during the second quarter. The company’s phone shipments were down 10% year-over-year during the first quarter of 2011, while phone sales were down 14.3% quarter-over-quarter and 9.2% year-over-year. More →
Smartphones’ share of the global cell phone market is poised to explode over the next four years, according to market research firm Pyramid Research. The firm on Friday released the findings of its latest Smartphone Forecast, as compiled by Senior Analyst and Practice Leader for Mobile Devices, Stela Bokun. Bokun determined that global smartphone sell-through — or, the number of smartphones sold to end users — will total 1.46 billion units in 2011, accounting for 27% of all cell phones sold. Pyramid expects that figure to nearly double to 53% in 2015, driven by growing demand for affordable Android smartphones. “Much of the projected total market growth in 2011 will come from the Africa and Middle East (AME) region, which will see a strong demand for low-end smartphone models, ultra low-cost handsets and dual-SIM and full touch-screen feature phones,” Bokun noted in a statement. “The main drivers of the demand in the developed markets will be the launches of a number of flagship high-end devices and new features and technologies. However, inexpensive smartphone models, particularly those from Huawei and ZTE, also will be in high demand in some of the richest Western European, Asian and North American markets.” Finally, Bokun notes that while smartphone sales will be driven in large part by Android over the next four years, Microsoft’s Windows Phone platform will overtake Android and other operating systems to become the top-selling smartphone platform in the world in 2015.