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Business | July 11, 2012

Nokia holds on to dear life in APAC

The Asian handset market is expected to shrug off the global economic malaise and deliver growth in the range of 6.9% year on year, reaching 624 million by the end of 2012.
“The Asian handset market has a lot going for it”, said Jake Saunders, VP for forecasting at ABI Research. The growth is not just coming from developed markets like Korea and Japan but also China, Indonesia, and India.

ABI Research estimate 203 million handsets will be sold in India in 2012 for an 11.2% growth YoY; while Indonesia should notch up 57 million handsets, and 16% growth in the same time-frame. While Nokia clung onto 37% market-share in India in 2011, Samsung, G'Five, Micromax, Karbonn, and Spice are not far behind. In Indonesia, Nokia’s market-share shrank to 21% as Samsung, RIM, Nexian, HT Mobile, and Cross made inroads.

4G is very much taking hold, with Korea and Japan gaining the lead. In Korea, operators LG U+, SK Telecom, and KT commenced commercial services in early 2012. The operators are selling LTE dongles, LTE-enabled tablets, and also smartphones. This is one market where Apple is starting to see a reversal in fortunes as Korean prosumers pile into stores to sign up for LTE subscription plans. Apple’s iPhone sold well in 2010 and 2011 with a discerning and tech-aware Korean buying public, however, in lieu of a LTE-capable iPhone, Samsung, LG, and even Pantech, have been able to pick up additional sales volume.

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