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Global connected device mkt to touch 2.2 bn units by 2017

Global sales of connected devices like smartphones, tablets and PCs is expected to surpass 2.2 billion units and touch revenues of $814.3 billion by 2017, according to research firm IDC.

Worldwide shipment of such devices grew 29.1 per cent year-on-year in 2012, crossing 1 billion units shipped at a value of $576.9 billion, IDC said in a statement.

Going forward, IDC predicts the market to continue surging with shipments surpassing 2.2 billion units and revenues reaching $814.3 billion in 2017, it added.

'Consumers and business buyers are now starting to see smartphones, tablets, and PCs as a single continuum of connected devices separated primarily by screen size,' IDC Programme Vice-President (Clients and Displays) Bob O'Donnell said.

The growth in 2012 was largely driven by 78.4 per cent rise in tablet shipments, which surpassed 128 million units. IDC expects tablet shipments to surpass desktop PCs in 2013 and portable PCs in 2014 and cross 352 million units by 2017.

Global desktop PC shipments, which stood at 148.4 million in 2012, is expected to drop to 141 million units in 2017.

Portable PC sales are expected to grow to 240.9 million units in 2017 from 202 million units in 2012.

Smartphone sales are also expected to see strong growth to 1.5 billion units in 2017 from 722.4 million units in 2012.

'Each of these devices is primarily used for data applications and different individuals choose different sets of screen sizes in order to fit their unique needs. These kinds of developments are creating exciting new opportunities that will continue to drive the smart connected devices market forward in a positive way,' O'Donnell said.

From a regional perspective, the smart connected device volume in emerging markets grew by 41.3 per cent in 2012 with the tablet volume growing by 111.3 per cent and smartphone volume by 69.7 per cent year-on-year, IDC said.

By 2017, IDC expects the tablet and smartphone markets to have a huge growth potential in the emerging markets.

'During this time, tablet unit shipments are expected to increase by a factor of 3 with a shipment value of $125 billion, while smartphone unit shipments are expected to double and reach a shipment value of $462 billion,' it added.
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