back to article Smartphone sales up 50%

Smartphone sales rose by half over the last three months, according to market analysts Gartner, with the segment now making up almost 20 per cent of phones sold. Of the 326 million handsets that Gartner reckons were sold in the last three months, 19 per cent fall into the smartphone category, with Symbian's share of that …


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  1. Geoff Campbell
    Jobs Horns

    Curve balls

    So I wonder at what point Android's upwards curve will intersect with Nokia's downwards curve?


  2. Lottie

    I suspect

    that a lot of the smartphone sales increase is that there are fewer and fewer dumb phones on the market.

    I had a devil of a job finding my other half a mobile. She prefers very, very dumb phones and most shops had almost nothing less than a semi-smart mobile. They're the new basic standard.

    I'm not surprised Android has taken such a hold. It's a good system, user friendly and seemingly able to be used on low to high spec phones without much difference in base experience. However, even thought it looks like it's overtaking blackberry, it's got a much larger opportunity with nearly every manufacturer using it.

    1. Tigra 07

      Why is Google limiting expansion?

      It's becoming a strange world with Microsoft running the computers and Google running the phones.

      I can't understand why Google passed up the chance to become a phone network aswell though, they could make billions from that because their phones are so in demand and it's easy money.

      1. Trevor_Pott Gold badge

        @Tigra 07

        Why enter a market you are spending billions to destroy? As much as I disagree with anti-net-neutrality folks like Andrew O, the one thing they are 100% correct on is that if Google gets its way then there will be zero money in being an ISP or mobile carrier. This isn’t the right threat for a net neutrality debate, but the facts are pertinent.

        Why hitch your horse to a wagon you’ve just set on fire?

      2. Rex Alfie Lee


        Google is already a huge ISP. With Google Talk that makes them a telephone company via wireless & so in terms of virtual reality they become a phone company.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Android is not that good

      On low-spec phones is not so smooth and battery life sucks but yes it works and it's apparently free (although you have to sell your soul to Google, and at some point soon we'll start seeing "protection racket" behavior by Google, just like MS did with Windows). So Android is quickly becoming the Windows of the smartphone world.

      1. Tigra 07
        Gates Halo

        RE: AC

        Android is becoming the "Windows of the smartphone world" because it's better and has more features.

        The only complaint i have with android so far is the Google Maps update

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Well it may be better than Windows Mobile...

          But there are other operating systems out there. By the way, I wonder what BlackBerry are going to do with QNX...

      2. Rex Alfie Lee
        Big Brother

        Battery-life sucks with all smartphones...

        The older smartphones only ran one task at a time & so that one was the only one using battery & time unused basically stopped & only checked in between. With multi-tasking you have several apps going at once whether you want that or not. Especially with Android. Your safe with iPhone because that only runs one & a half programs at a time, so get one of those. Anyway after a small tease to get the Applers screaming about their better sex-life & I'm sure it is because they're not bright enough to be nerds anyway. Sorry, another one!

        As far as Google becoming the Windows of the mobile phone I believe that has already happened. So far they've behaved fairly well but one can see the testing of waters coming out in current behaviours.

  3. Cameron Colley

    Can you buy a "non-smart" phone nowadays?

    OK, yes, I know that there are devices out there -- but all the adverts and shop windows are full of feature-full smart phones so it's no wonder people are buying them.

    Take the example of my friend -- she bought a brand new Android device the other day. She didn't want a smart phone, and didn't ask for one. In fact, she tried to take it back a few days later (when it was too late) due to terrible battery life and too much complexity she'll never use. She's getting used to it now and finding that it's not all that bad -- but I doubt she'll even use the web browser more than a couple of times a year, never mind the email client and other features.

    So, for the average (European at least) consumer, you actually have to seek out "non-smart" phones, it seems.

    1. SynnerCal
      Thumb Up

      Re: Can you buy a "non-smart" phone nowadays?

      My advice is either to look past the window display and go into the shop, or shop in your local supermarket. My works phone (very old Nokia 6310) packed up, so I replaced it with a Nokia 2330 - cost me £20 from the local Phones4U. I've also seen similar devices in the local Asda and Tesco stores.

      Okay, the 2330 has got a camera, but apart from that it's a basic phone (and I'm sure that there was an even dumber/cheaper Nokia, but I needed one with Bluetooth), and quite good - I use it for about 30 minutes a day, the rest of the time it's on standby and it needs charged about once a week.

  4. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    What makes a phone a smartphone? The figures aren't really that useful without this definition...

    What makes a phone a smartphone? The figures aren't really that useful without this definition...

    1. Trevor_Pott Gold badge


      The Trevor Pott definition of a smartphone, which holds no weight whatsoever, is that a smartphone is a device you can both install applications upon and make phone calls from. (I leave open the question of whether or not PCs/Laptops equipped with Skype count.) Many “dumb phones” still have advanced features: cameras, browsers, etc. These phones can’t be changed beyond the manufacturer’s software loadout however, making them even more locked down than a non-jailbroken iPhone.

      To contrast, a smartphone is essentially a palm pilot with a cellular radio and an application for making phone calls. There are nigglies about “but they’re more advanced than that” I am sure, but the basic principle remains the same. Smartphones are PDAs/application executing devices first and phones second. Dumb phones are phones first and they maybe do other things when needed.

      I suspect that 10 minutes with any device will give you a good understanding of which side of that gap the device in question was designed for.

      1. Robert Forsyth

        Would 3G divide them

        Wife and child have Nokia phones with S40 that do maps, web browsing, email, etc., but only connect via 2.5G (whatever that is). You can also download Java apps from the Ovi app store, not that I've tested the feature. The little ones (emergency) phone was around £50, a year ago.

        What smart phones have, may be, GPS, 3G, Wi-Fi, bigger screen, touch screen...

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Definition of "smartphone"

      It's usually defined as a phone on which the user can install and run applications.

  5. Anonymous Coward

    Fixed that for you

    "the iPhone 4 is still to arrive in some markets and is selling despite being dogged by the media blowing a small issue out of all proportion"

    1. Paul M 1

      "Fixed"... hmmmm

      Well since the media blows everything to do with Apple out of proportion you can't really complain about this one.

    2. OmniCitadel

      Ahhh HAH

      I knew having a phone which can't place calls and being concerned was just me over reacting as well... silly me.

    3. Anonymous Coward

      You can't have it both ways...

      When the iPhone was doing great you were probably happy as half the net filled up with previews, reviews, leaks and general gush about how wonderful each new iteration was. The column inches given over to publish ever more masturbatory shite were hardly justified or in proportion.

      Why cry now the same degree of coverage is being given to a flaw? A flaw that Apple claimed didn't exist until the rest of world proved it...errr...did.

      On-topic; I'm using the HTC Wildfire I got on the strength of the Reg's review. It's a great little phone; basically a baby Desire. I turned the HTC Sense UI off because I don't need six home screens or countless widgets. The three screens on the vanilla Android UI work just fine and the overall performance is a lot snappier for it.

      I'm happy with Android. It feels like it's 1995 again and I'm a part of something new; something pioneering and audacious. Back then being 'on the internet' meant that people pointed at you in the street and talked about you in hushed whispers. The sound of a dial-up modem doing it's thing was likened to the approach of the Four Horsemen.

      This is the stage I feel Android is at now. It's gaining traction, visibility and a momentum all of its' own. It's fun to use, has a common base and works well on a broad range of hardware. The people developing for it aren't people in lab coats locked away in California; they're ordinary folks who write apps or widgets out of that weird human philanthropy which can't quite be explained but was responsible for the rise of the internet.

      In short; you can stand in the corner wiping your eyes and rubbing your sore arse all you like. Android is a phone OS for phones real people want to use. Butthurt hipsters who spent too much on a broken personality substitute need not apply.

      Have a great weekend!

  6. Anonymous Coward

    Nearly right...

    "the iPhone 4 is still to arrive in some markets and is selling thanks to brand-bitches being too blind to its most famous design flaw"

  7. Raspy32

    Easy to find non-smartphones

    Just as a quick test I checked the O2 shop on their website and there are a whole bunch of cheap Pay-As-You-Go phones for the cost of only a few tenners which fall squarely into the non-smartphone category.

    Of course in the shops they display the flashiest and fanciest stuff they can, but there's plenty of more simple phones still on the market.

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