That is the somewhat surprising number that Juniper Research reckons smartphone sales will hit by 2013, despite the impact of the global financial crisis on the mobile handset market. In fact, so says a new report from Juniper Research, the smartphone sector sales could potentially sustain the performance of market leading key brands such as Nokia in this time economic uncertainty. The freely downloadable study 'Next Generation Smartphones: Players, Opportunities & Forecasts 2008-2013' suggests that annual sales of smartphones will rise by some 95 percent to more than 300 million between now and 2013.

Not all that surprising, I guess, what with more than 60 percent of the population now using mobile phones according to recent news stories. Indeed, at the heart of the forecast is the discovery of a rising demand for the kind of complex Web 2.0 applications that bring with them a broadening user appeal and so in turn are responsible for the expansion of the overall 'smart device' market. Such a key trend is not, of course, lost on the mobile handset manufacturers which are increasingly relying on sales of the higher-end devices to the mass market.

The report also reckons that by 2013 at least 23 percent of all new mobile phones will actually be smartphones, which represents an increase of 10 percent over last year. This year, it predicts, mobile device shipments will be decline by at least 10 percent, compared to nominal growth of 5 percent in 2008.

Report author Andrew Kitson says "The process of evolving mobile phones into Internet-centric, highly personalised mobile computers is well underway. Looking ahead, the shape and form of next-generation devices will most likely be led by software and content, rather than hardware, as vendors such as Nokia strive to make their devices highly personalised and rooted firmly in the online environment."

At least the report does not mention if people use their mobiles when they poo or during sex which makes a pleasant change of late.

About the Author

As Editorial Director and Managing Analyst with IT Security Thing I am putting more than two decades of consulting experience into providing opinionated insight regarding the security threat landscape for IT security professionals. As an Editorial Fellow with Dennis Publishing, I bring more than two decades of writing experience across the technology industry into publications such as Alphr, IT Pro and (in good old fashioned print) PC Pro. I also write for SC Magazine UK and Infosecurity, as well as The Times and Sunday Times newspapers. Along the way I have been honoured with a Technology Journalist of the Year award, and three Information Security Journalist of the Year awards. Most humbling, though, was the Enigma Award for 'lifetime contribution to IT security journalism' bestowed on me in 2011.

I think hardware will still be very important. I mean, getting the screen as big and thin and cheap is possible is still important. Improvements in hardware mean lower prices, and for a vast portion of the world, this means a serious amount of savings. And hardware improvements can be important in the quality direction, too. I mean, consider an iPhone. Now consider an iPhone that can be unfolded, with two or three screens smoothly connecting into one. Or consider one that let you stick a larger battery in, very elegantly. Things like basic practical hardware design is still important and could still be improved.

> At least the report does not mention if people use their mobiles when they poo or during sex which makes a pleasant change of late.

Well your blog entry just did.