IDC has predicted that Windows Mobile will grow strongly between 2009 and 2013. Noting that 18.3 million Windows Mobile handsets were shipped last year (7% down on 2008), IDC predicted Windows Mobile will boost its "consumer appeal" by being easier to use and supporting more multimedia applications and games. They forecast 51.7 million Windows Mobile handsets will be shipped in 3 years time.
While they project Android to grow explosively, that still places Windows Mobile as the OS with the second fastest growth over the period at 183%. The market itself is expected to grow by 20.1% each year.
Of note is that, according to the forecast, Windows Mobile is set to overtake the iPhone again in total yearly shipments.
The study found that Linux and webOS shipments will struggle throughout the forecast period. Palmâ€™s HTML based operating system, despite growing steadily, will capture limited market share due to limited deployment and availability of devices across multiple carriers.
IDC expects Windows Mobile to grow its market share by 3%, from 10% in 2009 to 13% in 2013, while both RIM and the iPhone will see a drop, RIM by 2% and the iPhone by 1%.
Another interesting factoid is that HTC only shipped 11.7 million smartphones in 2009, some of these of course being Android devices. This is another indication that HTC is no longer the majority of the Windows Mobile market, and more attention should be paid to other players such as LG and certainly Samsung, who has always been a strong Windows Mobile partner.
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