Smartphones sales have exceeded one billion for the first time.
According to IDC, 1,004.2 million devices were shipped during 2013 – almost 40 per cent (38.4 per cent) more than the 725.3 million units in 2012.
"The sheer volume and strong growth attest to the smartphone's continued popularity in 2013," commented Ramon Llamas, Research Manager of IDC's Mobile Phone team.
"Total smartphone shipments reached 494.4 million units worldwide in 2011, and doubling that volume in just two years demonstrates strong end-user demand and vendor strategies to highlight smartphones."
"Among the top trends driving smartphone growth are large screen devices and low cost," added Ryan Reith, Program Director of IDC's Worldwide Quarterly Mobile Phone Tracker.
“Of the two, I have to say that low cost is the key difference maker. Cheap devices are not the attractive segment that normally grabs headlines, but IDC data shows this is the portion of the market that is driving volume.”
“Markets like China and India are quickly moving toward a point where sub-$150 smartphones are the majority of shipments, bringing a solid computing experience to the hands of many.”
Samsung remained the biggest vendor in the market, but suffered a decline during Q4 2013. Despite the decline, the company maintained a double-digit lead ahead of Apple, which saw a record number of iPhones sold in Q1 of 2014.
Image of smartphone growth courtesy of Shutterstock.co.uk