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BizReport : Mobile Marketing : November 10, 2010

Report: Wireless market set to pass $54 billion this year

Good news for brands in the mobile space: American consumers continue to link their devices. In addition to smartphone upgrades, US consumers are linking tablets, iPods, GPS units and even e-readers. This increase in connectivity is helping to push the US wireless market to new heights; a new report from Chetan Sharma estimates that the wireless market will push past $54 billion this year.

by Kristina Knight

That is a 25% increase Year over Year and a 7% increase Quarter to Quarter. In total, connected device uses has increased more than 40% (YoY) and 12% (QtQ); connected device revenue is expected to surpass the prepaid segment over the next 5 years, according to the report. A lot of credit is being given to Apple's iPad, released earlier this year, as pushing more consumers and more competitors into the space. In fact, this report suggests that iPad has changed the game so much that netbook computers will fade into the sunset.

To date, much of the revenue from connected devices has been corralled by AT&T and Verizon, specifically because of their smartphone diversity and 3G/4G networks; they've captured about 85% of this revenue so far. However, T-Mobile has 3G and is beginning a new 4G campaign, specifically aimed at AT&T's 'slow' 3G network so that could be a game changer as well.

Metrics firm comScore reports that, as of September 2010 Samsung is the top handset manufacturer, with a 23% market share; RIM continues to lead the smartphone platform race with a 37% market share. The RIM numbers do indicate a near 3% dropoff for the quarter while Apple remained steady with a 24% market share and Google improved 6% points to reach a 21% market share. Microsoft also saw a slight decline (2.8%) while Palm's marketshare decreased about half of a percentage point.

Still, the number of consumers moving to smartphones increases. comScore also reports that nearly 59 million US consumers owned smartphones as of the end of Q3, a 15% increase over Q2 statistics. How are mobiles being used? Most consumers are using text capabilities most (67%), but browser and app use continued to increase with more than one-third (35% and 33% respectively) of users browsing or using apps.

Tags: Chetan Sharma, comScore, mobile handsets, mobile marketing, smartphones, wireless usage

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  • LawrenceK

    I can just think that people must be changing to prepaid phones. I mean it is beginning to make so much more sense. With the sales of prepaid out numbering those of contracts, it is no wonder why Straight Talk is stepping up to the plate. Now with a wider selection of phones and the same great coverage through Verizon, you would be dumb not to give them a try, I did and couldn't be happier, real people need real savings!

  • Tarron

    It will be interesting to get the stats on how much actual air use has risen. My guess it will far exceed the increases to actual revenue. Simply because a much more competitive market has resulted in a cheaper product. Carriers, and other mobile service providers are all very obviously pushing their unlimited plans very hard, with every month or so a new contender becoming cheaper, and easier. My major worry is that the individuals not interested in unlimited plans, are getting lost amidst a frenzy of major high-end users.



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