Is the handset market alive or dead?

Market analysts are at odds over which direction the handset market is headed. GfK claims that the global mobile phone market is growing at the fastest rate for five years, with 160 million extra units sold, while IMS Research states that the global market is slowing with year-on-year growth only achieving 5.7 per cent.

Nokia has released estimates of its 2007 figures which suggest a three per cent fall in growth as compared to a 16 per cent boom the year before. Its Asia-Pacific shipment certainly helped keep the overall number positive by increasing over 30 per cent in 2007, as against 27 per cent in 2006.

However, Nokia North American sales fell to six per cent in 2007 compared to 13 per cent growth in 2006. The company's CFO, Rick Simonson, made light of this decline claiming that the impact of an economic slowdown in the U.S. on the group would be limited given that it generates less than five per cent of its sales there.

For more on this story:
- read Pocket-lint, Cellular News and Mobile Europe