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US research firm predicts smartphone dominance by 2011

US research firm predicts smartphone dominance by 2011

The research group Nielsen has analysed recent sales and data usage figures to come up with predictions which could put smartphones at the top of the pile in terms of sales by the time 2011 arrives.

The report is based on the recent rise in the sale of smartphones in the US, where in the third quarter of 2009 smartphones accounted for around 40 per cent of new handsets sold, up by a third from the previous quarter.

The number of people accessing the internet from smartphones is also taking a dramatic upward shift, with a majority of mobile internet use driven by smartphones rather than more basic handsets.

Nielsen blogger Jerry Rocha was optimistic about the future of the smartphone market, suggesting that although his firm has set 2011 as the date for the dawn of smartphone dominance, if the right conditions are met then that day could come far sooner than predicted.

According to Rocha it is the competition amongst the manufacturers that is driving down prices and fuelling the continued growth of smartphones, just as unlimited mobile internet deals on certain handsets are causing the increase in mobile internet use.

If the predictions become a reality, 150 million Americans will be using smartphones by 2011 and of that proportion around 60 per cent will be going online regularly.

Figures released by Nielsen also suggest that although the iPhone is considered as the handset to beat by most professionals, it is by no means the main platform for mobile internet use.

Handsets using Google Android are on average marginally more likely to be used to access the internet than iPhones and Android users appear to download more applications than iPhone owners.

The latter statistic is particularly influential because of Apple's assumed dominance in the field of mobile applications thanks to the ever growing line-up of the App Store.

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