LONDON -(Dow Jones)- Gartner Thursday announced that worldwide sales of camera phones will reach 295.5 million in 2005. This represents 38 of total worldwide mobile phone sales, up from 14% in 2004.
Carolina Milanesi, principal analyst for mobile terminals research at Gartner, said: "a key factor in future market growth will be the declining cost of integrating the technology into mobile phones."
Gartner predicts that the cost of integrating a one-megapixel camera to a phone will more than halve over the next four years.
Gartner predicts that sales of camera phones in Western Europe will be close to 85 million by the end of 2005, more than 55% of total mobile terminal sales in the region.
By 2009 this will rise to 143 million, representing nearly 90% of the Western European mobile market.
North America also continues to experience significant growth, with the camera phone market driving overall growth in mobile sales. Camera phone sales are expected to reach over 70 million units in 2005, representing 47% of total device sales in 2005.
In both regions, Gartner points to the healthy subsidies offered on camera phones as key to the future success of the market.
Camera phone sales in Asia Pacific will almost double in 2005 compared to the previous year, reaching 68 million units. Japan however, continues to lead the curve in camera phone penetration with sales of camera phones accounting for nearly 92% of total mobile sales.
Unsurprisingly, emerging markets such as Latin America and Africa, where low end phones tend to represent the majority of sales, have lower adoption rates. However, even in these regions, Gartner predicts that as pricing on integrated cameras decline, close to half the total camera phone sales in 2009 will be equipped with up to a one- megapixel camera.
(END) Dow Jones Newswires "
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