According to the latest research from Strategy Analytics, global mobile phone shipments grew a sluggish 12 percent year-over-year, to reach 252 million units in Q1 2007. This was the first quarter in almost 2 years that annual growth has been below the 20% mark.
Neil Mawston, Associate Director at Strategy Analytics said, "Worldwide cell phone shipments have been growing at an average annual rate of 25% over the past 6 quarters. While Q1 growth is seasonally slower, the 12 percent growth registered in the first quarter of 2007 is markedly down on that longer-term trend."
Bonny Joy, Analyst at Strategy Analytics, added, "A moderate buildup of inventory in Q4 2006 led to weaker shipments during Q1 2007. We estimate a sizeable 9 million units of excess inventory were sold off worldwide during the first quarter. Looking ahead to the second quarter, we expect more stock to be cleared from channels and the supply chain should eventually return to normal levels early in the second half of the year."
Other findings from Strategy Analytics' Q1 2007 Global Handset Market Share Update report include:
* Nokia widened its market share lead over Motorola to 18 percentage points in Q1 2007. This is the largest gap between the two since Q4 2003;
* Samsung rebounded with strong volumes, while LG strengthened its profit margins. These are tentative signs that the big Korean players are on the verge of a comeback.