The global smartphone market will see an estimated 49.2% growth in 2011, reaching shipments of 450 million devices, research firm IDC has estimated.
The analyst calculates that Android devices will drive the growth and account for 45% of the smartphone market by 2015.
IDC is also forecasting a good future for Microsoft’s Windows Phone 7, following the first handset’s launch in 2012. According to the research firm, Windows Phone 7 will become the second most common smartphone operating system, accounting for more than one in five handsets by 2015.
IDC senior research analyst Ramon Llamas said: ‘Android is poised to take over as the leading smartphone operating system in 2011 after racing into the number two position in 2010.’
‘For the vendors who made Android the cornerstone of their smartphone strategies, 2010 was the coming-out party. This year will see a coronation party as these same vendors broaden and deepen their portfolios to reach more customers, particularly first-time smartphone users.’
Last week, Ovum predicted that the global smartphone market would double in size by 2016 and that Google’s Android operating system will drive the growth, emerging as the dominant platform.
Ovum principal analyst Adam Leach said: ‘We will see dramatic shifts in dominance for smartphone software platforms, with Android storming into the lead with 38% market share, compared to Apple iOS 17.5% by 2016.'
The Analyst also predicted a smartphone annual growth rate of 14.5% between 2010 and 2016 with Android easily outperforming Apple by establishing a 20.5% market share lead.