There have been several changes in the mobile handset market since the previous forecast was released in 2006. Both the high and low ends of handset pricing have become more important. At the high end of the market, the Apple iPhone hit the US market in June and will soon be available in Europe; elsewhere, vendors continue to develop low-cost and ultra-low-cost phones for emerging markets.
Worldwide handset shipments are expected to increase to 1.46 billion by 2012, driven in part by increasing availability of low-cost and ultra-low-cost handsets in emerging nations. Total handset revenues will increase at a compound annual growth rate of 1.7% to a total of US$165.4 billion by 2012. Third-generation (3G) handsets will represent half of the worldwide revenue for cellular handsets.