Smartphones outdo feature phones in Western Europe: IDC

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As per the latest findings of IDC, the sales of smartphones has surpassed those of feature phones in the West European region. The survey took into account sales of phones in the second quarter of this year. It indicates that while feature phone shipments were down 29 percent to 20.4 million units, those of smartphones increased 48 percent to 21.8 million units from the previous year.

Apparently this is the first time that the sales of smartphones, which represent 52 percent of the total mobile phone shipments have surpassed those of feature phone in Western Europe. The trend of buying smartphones has been on the rise since some time in European nations. A reason for this trend to be gaining popularity could be that mobile operators of the continent have stopped subsidizing feature phones.

“First, the economic environment in the eurozone is deteriorating, with a direct impact on consumer demand. Secondly, the smartphone segment was strongly impacted by the sharp decline of Nokia, which was not totally offset by the remaining players, which may indicate that Symbian fans are holding off on their phone replacements until Nokia launches its Windows Phones. Lastly, operators focused on clearing inventories for the introduction of the new devices expected in the third quarter, such as the iPhone5 from Apple and Windows Phones from HTC and other players,” cited Francisco Jeronimo, European mobile devices research manager, IDC.

The IDC study has additionally found out that Android has gained a sort of a leadership in the region by representing 48.5 percent of total smartphone shipments. Among the phone manufacturers, Samsung was the most representative Android manufacturer owing to the wide success of its Galaxy devices.

The feature phone segment is appearing to emerge as a small one, comprising users who only need a device for calling and messaging. It is expected that smartphones are likely to eat up more of the sales and shipment pie in the future.