THE LATEST figures from Gartner show that Motorola's decline from its historic number two slot is continuing and new names are sneaking into the Top Ten suppliers.
Overall during 2007 Motorola's market share was down to 14.3 per cent from 21.1 but worse still in the last quarter of 2007 it had fallen to 11.9 per cent compared to 21.5 per cent in 2006.
Gartner predicts Motorola is going to decline for at least another three quarters. Meantime, China's ZTE has made a good showing as did Apple and RIM, all of whom made it into the Top Ten handset suppliers.
The losers included China's Bird, France's Sagem and Taiwan's BenQ. Whether Apple can sustain its position into Q1 2008 is anybody's guess.
ZTE's performance has sparked rumours that, once again, it might buy Motorola's failing handset business. Gartner questions whether it has the resources to do so. But then few foresaw Lenovo's successful acquisition of IBM's handset division.
In 2007, Gartner says 15 billion units were sold which represents a 16 per increase from 2006's figure of 990.9 million. Nokia even increased its market share in Q4 2007 to a record 40.4 per cent.
The cleverest move, according to Gartner, was the Sony Ericsson decision to offer a Windows Mobile based handset which will help it in the North American market and turn it into more of a global player. µ
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